New Zealand -6.5 at Evens
Under 41.5 points at 10/11
The Rugby World Cup has been a phenomenal showcase for rugby – unless you’re from a Northern hemisphere country, in which case you probably watched until the quarter finals and then turned over to Downtown Abbey or just turned the TV off and stared at the wall. Trust us when we say it’ll be well worth turning it back on for the final, with Australia v New Zealand promising to be a final talked about for years to come.
They’ve been spending all week prepping, and based on everything we’ve seen from the two teams this is going to be a close, tactical affair. Although given one of Australia’s forward coaches has been pictured holding a piece of paper with all their tactics on it, maybe it won’t be. We especially enjoyed the note next to Keiran Read’s name which simply said: “get him rattled”. Is that even still possible now? We’ll find out.
Of the last ten times the teams of played, just one game has gone Australia’s way (a 27-19 victory in Sydney in August earlier this year in the Rugby Championship) which was swiftly followed up a week later by a 41-13 demolition job with McCaw and Carter contributing 16 points between them in a game New Zealand never looked like losing. Australia would have covered the line (set at -6.5 by the bookies) four times out of the last ten, but with 8 of those games being played in Australia the edge has to go for New Zealand.
The All Blacks have continually proved why they were such strong favourites pre tournament, and stand at odds of just 4/11 to retain their Rugby World Cup title. France could have run them close with the team they put out but were knocked not just out of sight but out of the country with a 49 point victory leaving everyone in awe. The South Africa game was far closer, but New Zealand always looked to be in control and every time South Africa asked them the big question they answered, with Ben Smith and Richie McCaw putting in star performances.
Julian Savea has run away with the top try scorer numbers, scoring 8 tries in just 5 matches leaving him 3 clear of four players in second including team-mate Nehe Milner Skudder. In joint third is our 50/1 pre-tournament try scorer tip Adam Ashley-Cooper, who currently has 4 tries in five matches. He’s 5/2 to score a try anytime, but we’ll be avoiding the anytime tryscorer match as we think this is going to be a close battle. Instead, we’re going with Under 41.5 points; New Zealand know how to win ugly, as they proved last game, and we expect them to grab control of this game by the scruff of the next in a game which means a huge amount for both countries.