Rugby World Cup 2019 Betting: Best Odds, Tips and Analysis

Rugby World Cup 2019 Betting: Best Odds, Tips and Analysis

Quick Bets:


The weather in Japan has dictated Italy's Rugby World Cup fate and I have to admit I think World Rugby’s policy of dealing with the typhoon threat leaves a lot to be desired.

Typhoon Hagibis, a category five super typhoon, is on course to strike Japan on Saturday and, as a result, torrential rain and ferocious winds are forecast this weekend in Tokyo and Yokohama – two key host cities at the World Cup.

As such, England’s scheduled meeting with France on Saturday in Yokohama has been cancelled, as has New Zealand verses Italy, and Scotland’s crucial battle with hosts Japan the following day is also in doubt.

World Rugby's regulations stipulate that cancelled games will be recorded as scoreless draws and whilst tournament rules allow endangered games to be moved to another city, that could lead to logistical chaos for both fans and teams.

To me, whatever tier the nation may be, a final pool game being cancelled and a team being told ‘that’s your World Cup over’ is just not right. The alternative is simple – postpone the game and reschedule for a day or two later. The knockout stages don’t begin until October 19, so it was doable.

Pool A and Pool B are extremely tight, and the thought of Scotland as well as Italy being dumped out of the tournament based on a weather issue is bordering on amateurish. I didn't think it would happen, but the fact it’s now a reality that could get even worse seems crazy to me.

It’s a badly managed situation and one that could have been thought through a lot better, especially since they’ve had four years to prepare for Japan 2019 and knowing the region is vulnerable to adverse weather.

Whatever happens, the end of the pool stage is in sight and a few teams have had to play twice in the final week of the groups. They’ll have to manage their games really cleverly because they’ll be mindful of picking up injuries, especially the teams who already have one eye on the quarter-finals, so bear that in mind when choosing your bets this week.


Rugby World Cup 2019 Betting Odds (As of 11/10/2019)

TeamBest OddsBookmaker
New Zealand11/10Betway
England4/1William Hill
South Africa4/1Coral
Wales8/1William Hill
Ireland16/1Black Type
Australia25/1Coral
France40/1Boylesports
Japan100/1Ladbrokes
Scotland350/1Ladbrokes
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Ireland vs Samoa: First-Half Key

Not knowing what’ll happen between Japan and Scotland the following day, if anything at all, Joe Schmidt has no choice but to go all out for a bonus point win for Ireland against Samoa on Saturday.

Another game that had initially been threatened by the incoming typhoon, head coach Schmidt can’t afford to rest key players despite the risk of injury against the giant, robust and hard-hitting Samoans.

That's why he's gone with his strongest team available, presumably with a view of getting the job done within the first-half, so that he can empty the bench in the second-half.

Against a physical side like Samoa, there’s always going to be the risk of injuries, but there’s no hiding from it – this is a game Ireland must win and must win well.

It would be a different story if Ireland hadn’t lost to Japan, but this is the situation Schmidt finds himself in and it means he has to risk the likes of Johnny Sexton, who has been so key to anything good Ireland have mustered so far at this tournament.

Although they’re extremely physical and strong, this is not the best Samoa side we’ve seen in recent World Cups, but that is not to say they won’t pose a challenge to Ireland, who you would expect not to rest on their laurels given what happened against the hosts.

I expect them to initially put up a good fight against Ireland before getting worn down and faltering. From a betting perspective, I like the look of 6/5 with William Hill on the first-half being the highest scoring period, given the fact Ireland need to kill the game and get their key men out of there.

Tip: First Half Highest Scoring Period - 6/5 with William Hill


Japan vs Scotland: Scots Too Savvy

I’ve said in this column before that I think Scotland will learn from Ireland’s mistakes and exploit weaknesses in Japan, and I’m sticking with that assessment ahead of Sunday’s showdown.

Scotland head coach Gregor Townsend will have done his homework, there’s no doubt about that, and they will be set up right to deal with their threat – that’s a view the bookies must hold too as they make Scotland 4/6 favourites in the match betting.

Don’t get me wrong, Japan’s performance against Ireland was brilliant and great for the tournament, but there are ways to nullify them, and I think Scotland will be too savvy for Jamie Joseph’s side, who have been given odds of 5/4 for another huge win.

Scotland have been gaining momentum ever since their tough opener against Ireland, but they deserve credit for the way they’ve bounced back from that below-par performance to be within one win of a shot at the All Blacks.


Scotland

Scotland are slight favourites to beat Japan, if they get to play the hosts (© PA Images)


They’ve improved with every game in the competition and, dare I say it, if Ireland were to be playing Scotland right now it could be a very different result to the one we got on the opening weekend.

The only downside for Scotland is that, should they indeed beat Japan, this might be as good as it gets for them, as New Zealand will await them in the quarters and it’s very unlikely they’ll overcome the 6/5 tournament favourites.

Assuming they meet, the only thing Scotland can do to have any sort of success against the All Blacks would be to take a similar approach to Fiji – who have gone down fighting with spirited performances against tier one duo Australia and Wales – by just throwing caution to the wind and having a go, albeit at the risk of getting heavily beaten.

Tip: Scotland to beat Japan by 1-10 points – 13/5 with Betfair


What about Wales?

Wales are going to win all their pool games and, given that includes a victory over Australia, I think you have to admit they’re looking impressive.

On Wednesday they had a bit of a test against Fiji, who went 10-0 up in the first half, but that will do them no harm as they look ahead to Uruguay this Sunday in Kumamoto, where they're 1/100 to win.

I tipped up Australia to beat them but Wales got the job done, so I hold my hands up, they’re looking more and more like the Grand Slam winners we saw in February and March.

As is typical of the Welsh, they’re peaking as the World Cup hots up. They had been relatively lucky with injuries up until the 29-17 win over Fiji, after which Warren Gatland said his team were “sore and battered”.

On the back of that, they can afford to bring in a few fringe players to allow their big guns to recuperate – Dan Biggar will definitely miss out but hopefully his head injury isn’t serious enough for him to miss the quarter-final.

With England’s meeting against France now cancelled, that means Wales are very likely to run into the French in the last eight.

I tipped them up at even-money (1/1) to get as far as the semi-finals in this tournament in my first column, and I’m sticking with that bet as the French are too underwhelming to beat a really good Wales side. The price has since shortened, but that's a testament to Wales' form.

Tip: Wales to reach the semi-finals – 10/11 with Ladbrokes


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