How the Bookies See It
Draw (Aus -18)
- Australia have dominated this competition from the outset. They opened with an 18-4 win over England, then followed up by beating France (52-6), Lebanon (34-0), Samoa (46-0) and Fiji (54-6). Whilst the margin of victory in these games was impressive, it is interesting to note that they didn’t dominate England by nearly as much as they did the other nations they faced. That, and the fact that England went on to perform even better in their subsequent games, is likely to make the coming match this Saturday the stiffest of them all for Australia.
- England knew that their first game against Australia would be tough, but they weren’t completely whitewashed, and were beaten 18-4. England bounced back from that defeat by beating Lebanon (29-10), France (36-6), Papua New Guinea (36-6), and Tonga (18-20), so their loss to Australia was their only disappointment of the competition, and not a completely unexpected one. Their string of four consecutive wins since that defeat will have boosted England’s confidence massively, and the team will be poised to make the most of any chink in Australia’s armour this weekend.
As the bookmaker’s odds indicate, Australia are the clear form favourites to win this competition, and the team will be encouraged by the fact that they succeeded in beating England a few weeks ago. Whilst England look certain to put up a good fight, those who want to bet on the outright result would be brave to oppose the country which has won the World Cup ten times from a possible 14, and which has failed to reach the final on just one occasion, back in 1954.
For bettors who are willing to look beyond the outright winner market, the handicap betting market looks very appealing. Since Australia managed to beat England by ‘just’ 18-4 in their first match at the end of October, and Betfred is offering England at even money for a +18.0 handicap, we think that England could be a good bet there. Being patriotic types when the odds make it viable, we will side with England in the handicap market and hope that they end this competition as least as well as they started it.
Sports.net's Top Tip
*Please note, odds may fluctuate.