The Rugby World Cup has been excellent viewing to date and now there’s only four teams left.
New Zealand vs. England and Wales vs. South Africa will grace our screens this weekend and we have game previews with expert betting predictions.
Can the All Blacks and Springboks make yet another World Cup final? Or will it be an all-European final?
Plenty of questions to be answered in Japan.
Rugby World Cup Semi Finals Tips
England vs. New Zealand @ 7:00pm, Saturday October 26
England and New Zealand are both coming off dominating victories in the quarterfinals last week.
The All Blacks smoked Ireland – who were the highest-rated team in the world. It was one-way traffic throughout the game as Ireland took over 60 minutes to score their first points.
It was a performance from the All Blacks that put every other team on notice. They’re looking for their third consecutive World Cup win and that experience is starting to shine through.
Despite missing their final round-robin game against Italy, the All Blacks were firing on all cylinders from the word go.
There were some controversial decisions in the backline, most notably dropping Ben Smith out of the team completely. However, the new blood for the All Blacks is showing why the factory belt is so strong in New Zealand.
Standing in their way this week is England. They were just as impressive against Australia, however, the Wallabies didn’t put up much of a fight.
England’s rush defense gave Australia no time to find their offensive rhythm and it was stifling.
It looked as though it would be a close game throughout, but two tries in two minutes gave England all the momentum. The game got to within a point straight after halftime but the English pulled away for an easy victory.
It’s shaping up to be a classic contest this Saturday. The All Blacks have the classier outfit but the English are tough and shouldn’t be discounted.
Bookmakers have the All Blacks as $1.32 favourites and that’s where we would have framed the market. They are the best team in the world but most of the action will be with the points spread options.
The current line is 7.5 and that could see a lot of money come for England. However, it’s tough to look past the AB’s and we’re expecting them to win by 10 points.
Betting Tip: New Zealand –7.5 ($1.90) – Bet Now
Wales vs. South Africa @ 8:00pm, Sunday October 27
This is the most intriguing semifinal of the weekend as punters don’t quite know what to expect.
Wales were moderately lucky to get to this stage after beating France by one point. With France dominating the game at half time, they received a red card which turned the game on its head.
France were unable to recover and Wales were the beneficiaries of that. It’s tough to say that Wales deserved the win but they have got to this stage on merit.
On the other side of the coin, South Africa were easy winners over Japan – allowing only three points over the 80 minutes.
It was a game South Africa were expected to win easily and they didn’t disappoint. But, not having a tough test could work against them this week.
Wales were pushed to their limits and having that experience will do them plenty of good this week. South Africa had a much easier game but they should feel comfortable about their position.
The southern hemisphere teams have a good record against the Europeans and most expected South Africa to make the final. They were the favourites along with New Zealand to meet in the final next week.
No team has ever lost a pool game and won the World Cup. That’s what South Africa is trying to do, but they first need to get past a pesky Wales side.
We’re giving the edge to South Africa. They have won World Cups and have been in this situation many times. They won’t be looking ahead to the final as they know Wales are a tough team to beat.
The Springboks are $1.28 in the head-to-head market and –8.5 in the points spread. There’s better value taking them to win 1-12, which pays $2.60.
Betting Tip: South Africa 1-12 ($2.60) – Bet Now