Media Rugby Betting Coverage
Sky Sports 2
|Australia||4/9 bet365||-6 10/11 williamhill|
|Wales||57/25 betdaq||+7 10/11 ladbrokes|
Australian rugby bounced back last week with a morale boosting win over 6 nations champs Wales, and come into this week’s game with an unchanged team. In last week’s betting preview we alluded to the fact that Welsh form should be taken with a pinch of salt after some iffy 6 Nations wins and a lucky Barbarian win, and so it proved; Wales were subdued, contained, and on the whole they failed to fire when it really mattered. They came back into the game to be only a point behind in the last quarter, but you never really felt like Australia were going to lose the game, sealing the rugby match with a Pat McCabe try off a beautiful line to finish the win off on an 8 point margin win.
There was little urgency from Wales until the game was 14 points ahead of them, and Australian fatigue after that Scotland game had started to set in. Cuthbert lead the charge after the Wallabies hit them hard early, but Wales were disjointed, and never really got into the game. Their scrum didn’t dominate as some people expected, and they simply didn’t take advantage of the possession as well as Australia- the stats were 50/50 in percentage terms, with evens on line breaks and turnovers. Interestingly, Australia also conceded 13 penalties to Wales’s seven. This could point to a yellow card being shown on Saturday perhaps, but the best i can find is 4/6 in paddypower- a bit short I reckon.
You can look at this upcoming game in one of two ways- either Wales are going to play better having had more time together, or, Australia are going to realise they can cut Wales open at will and that they also have had more time together. Wales have had an entire six nations campaign just three months ago too, and a lot of people forget that, so they shouldn’t have been unfamiliar with each other last week. That being the case, maybe they’re just knackered tired after a long season, and they certainly looked like that, particularly in the first 20 minutes. There’s an argument for both perspectives, and recent history suggests there might be some value in the Wales +7 as these two have played out some close games in the past few years. But for individual team-member reasons, which I’m about to go into, I have my doubts about Wales +7.
Australia have named an unchanged side, with just Kepu a slight doubt in the front row after he strained his arm last week. Unfortunately for Australia Kurtley Beale won’t make the game either. The unchanged line-up reflects the excellent performance last week, and Australia backers will be hoping they can repeat the performance.
The Welsh team has seen the withdrawal of Faletau from the tour completely, and he’ll be a big loss. He does a lot of unseen work, and has been a regular in the Welsh side. Next on the injury list is blunt- force- trauma- attacking George North, and his fellow Scarlet Scott Williams in the centre. The soundings from the Welsh camp are that both will likely make the game, but I’d take this with a pinch of salt. Both seem to have been injured regularly all season, and have had very little rugby for most of it and that includes their club games. They’ve had very few Scarlets appearances, being saved for Wales more often than not ,and it’s something that Scarlets fans are particularly unhappy with, with many going so far as to question their injury status repeatedly, and whether it is actually for real, or just precautionary with Welsh games around the corner. You have to wonder just how fragile these lads are, and whether they’ll be up to another 60/70 minutes of hard hitting stuff from the Wallabies on Saturday.
Finally Sam Warburton looks well off the pace compared to his town high standards, and is carrying an injury all season. You can clearly see it is affecting his game. He was OK at best last week, and his passing was shocking at times. Welsh resources are starting to look very thin.
(Welsh team not out yet)
Australia: 15 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 14 Cooper Vuna, 13 Rob Horne, 12 Pat McCabe, 11 Digby Ioane, 10 Berrick Barnes, 9 Will Genia, 8 Wycliff Palu , 7 David Pocock (c), 6 Scott Higginbotham, 5 Nathan Sharpe, 4 Rob Simmons , 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tatafu Polota-Nau, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements: 16 Stephen Moore, 17 Ben Alexander, Dave Dennis, 18 Michael Hooper, 19 Nic White, 20 Anthony Fainga’a, 21 Mike Harris.
Rugby Betting Tips
Same as the start of the week, i’m staying with Australia -6 in light of all of the above. The weather is dry Friday, with a small chance of showers on saturday. Either way i’m expecting a more structured game, with Wales realising they have to keep it tight from the start, and begin with a bit more fire in their bellies. It would be nice to see a Welsh win for a nice series finale next week, but with Welsh players carrying injuries, and the end of a long season taking it’s toll, it’s hard to see anything other than an Australian victory here. The question for alot of punters is, can Australia really put some big points on Wales?. You’d imagine Wales will really fight for this one knowing the series is lost if they go down, so the first half SHOULD be close enough, with Australian power winning out in the end. But there’s merit to that Wales +7 at ladbrokes if you think that the fact of Wales losing meaning the series is gone and lost, might bring out the energy reserves and extra motivation.
Maybe they’re lying in the long grass and this was their plan all along?! That said, when Australia attacked last week, they found plenty of holes. Can Wales shore things up is the real consideration.
- Australia -6 in paddypower- If these injuries hit Wales harder than they’re making out, there’s not much experience and real quality to take over in North/Wiliams and Warburton’s case.
- I’m going to wait for the Welsh team announcement as it’ll have a big impact on how this one goes.
– small chance of showers, dry the day before.
– Chris Pollock