Scotland v Australia
- Winner: Scotland 13/8, Australia 4/9, Draw 25/1
Although Scotland found themselves on the wrong end of a 22-17 reverse to New Zealand last weekend at BT Murrayfield, Gregor Townsend’s troops can take great heart from the way they played against the back-to-back world champions. Full-back Stuart Hogg shone for the hosts, posing a real attacking threat and cutting edge every time he carried the ball. The Glasgow Warrior is one to watch against Australia this Saturday afternoon, where the Scots are 6/5 to reach 10 points first.
Fraser Brown and Sean Maitland have both recovered from ankle and knee injuries to be called up to the squad ahead of the side’s third and final Test of the autumn. There's 12/5 on Scotland/Scotland in the Half Time/Full Time betting odds, and the men in blue will be out to repeat their historic 24-19 win over Australia from their summer tour. Townsend’s troops are priced at 11/10 with to cross the whitewash first, and can be found at 7/4 to secure what would be an incredible victory.
The Australians arrive at BT Murrayfield off the back of being thumped 30-6 by England at Twickenham, somewhat undoing all the promise they showed in their 29-21 triumph over Wales the week before. Head coach Michael Cheika was visibly unhappy with the officiating on display against the Red Rose, with captain Michael Hooper and Kurtley Beale both yellow-carded. The Wallabies will need to improve their discipline against Scotland, and are 9/2 to secure victory by 6-10 points.
The green and gold jerseys will want to end their autumn series on a high before returning down under, and go into this encounter looking to secure their second win in three games. You’ll receive 10/11 for Australia/Australia in the Half Time/Full Time betting, and you would expect a response after their underwhelming display in south-west London.
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England v Samoa
- Winner: England 1/66, Samoa 25/1, Draw 100/1
Eddie Jones’ England have enjoyed a winning autumn so far, backing up an unconvincing win over Argentina with a big victory over Australia. They now face Samoa, and the bookmakers understandably have the home side as big favourites to make it 22 wins from 23 games under Jones’ stewardship. Priced at a tempting 7/1 to prevail by 21-25 points, the Red Rose are expected to finish their autumn with a flourish against the Pacific Islanders. In what is a much-changed 25-man England squad, the likes of Anthony Watson, Jonathan Joseph and George Kruis have all been released back to their clubs, whilst ball-carrying Number 8 Nathan Hughes has been ruled out through injury.
It looks like the England coaching team are using this Test to look at some of their fringe players, with Sam Simmonds, Charlie Ewels and Nick Isiekwe all expected to get some gametime at this level. Behind the scrum, Alex Lozowski and Piers Francis are two relatively newer players to look out for in the backline.
Although not their strongest outfit, there’s a hugely telling 1/14 for England/England in the Half Time/Full Time betting. The hosts are also 1/9 to cross the whitewash first, with identical odds with the same bookmaker for them to finish with a flourish and score the game’s final try.
As for Samoa, they’re winless so far on their European tour, succumbing to a 44-38 reverse to Scotland before last weekend’s 17-13 loss to Romania in Bucharest. The Islanders - renowned for their bone-crunching, abrasive physicality – have had to contend with a number of off-field issues though, with the Samoa Rugby Union declaring itself bankrupt earlier this month.
On the field, they’re 50/1 to secure what would be a first ever victory over their opponents by 6-10 points. Although they’re underdogs, Tim Nanai-Williams is one of their creative sparks to look out for in what is a bruising backline. They will look to exploit England’s unfamiliarity in certain combinations, and are 12/1 to win the second-half, but it may not be enough.
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Wales v New Zealand
- Winner: Wales 13/2, New Zealand 1/10, Draw 40/1
It was the same old story for Wales in the opening weekend of their autumn campaign, with a thirteenth straight loss over Australia, followed by much-changed XV only managing to scrape a 13-6 win over Georgia. The pressure is on the men in red to come up with the goods in their penultimate autumn Test. They were hugely disappointing and flat against a dogged, determined Georgian outfit, and the All Blacks will provide a stern test, with the Springboks still to come at the beginning of December.
Wales haven’t beaten New Zealand since 1953, when they prevailed 13-8 in Cardiff, and if they are to end their 64-year hoodoo against the greatest team on the planet, performance levels will need to improve significantly. The hosts, 7/1 to pull off the most unlikely of victories by 1-12 points at the Principality Stadium, are also 43/10 to win the second-half on Saturday.
Liam Williams and Alex Cuthbert have been ruled out for the home side through injury, with Hallam Amos and Steff Evans expected to join the ever-reliable Leigh Halfpenny in the back-three. Wales are 5/2 to score the game’s first try, and that could very well come from one of those three men.
The All Blacks could end 2017 on a roll, with the fifth and final victory of their autumn tour. Having already secured victories over the Barbarians, Scotland, and France twice, they’re rightly favourites with a whole host of bookmakers to do the job yet again this weekend. 1/8 in the Race to 10 points betting, they’re 80/1 in the To Win to Nil market. Head coach Steve Hansen is expected to name his strongest-possible XV for this clash, so the smart money would undoubtedly be on an away win.
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New Zealand/New Zealand
Ireland v Argentina
- Winner: Ireland 1/8, Argentina 5/1, Draw 40/1
The clash between Joe Schmidt’s Ireland and Daniel Hourcade’s Argentina is a fascinating one on paper. The hosts come into this clash with autumn victories under their belt against South Africa and Fiji, and will be chomping at the bit to make it a clean sweep against their South American opponents. Priced at 1/9 to come out with the victory, they’re 4/7 to open the scoring at the Aviva Stadium – be it a try, penalty or drop goal.
Apart from missing New Zealand-born Leinster stand-off Joey Carberry through injury, there’s a full-strength squad for Schmidt to pick from. Jonny Sexton is expected to resume his fly-half duties after being rested against Fiji, and the likes of Rory Best and Sean O’Brien will be primed for the physical challenge that always comes with facing a weighty Argentinian pack. You can get odds of 16/1 in the Draw/Ireland Half Time/Full Time betting, and whilst the home side are favourites to pick up the win in Dublin, you feel like Argentina have something of a point to prove.
It has been a troubled 2017 for the Pumas, with fatigue from a lengthy schedule undoubtedly contributing to their nine losses from eleven games. They might have overcome Italy 31-15 last weekend in Florence, but a tiring outfit will need to re-energise if they’re to take Ireland’s scalp in Dublin. They’re 5/2 to score the game’s first try on Saturday evening, and are 11/4 to reach 10 points first. Led by the talismanic Agustin Creevy, they’ll give it everything to end their year on a high, but a win may just be out of their reach.
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