Women's Rugby World Cup Betting: England Favourites To Claim The Title
It was the final pairing that was anticipated from the word go and with one of them now being just 80 minutes away from glory, UK betting sites are offering their two cents on whether England or New Zealand will come away with the Women’s World Cup trophy.
Following a relatively routine passage to the last-four, these two sides were eventually put to the pin of their collar at Eden Park in Auckland last weekend.
England And New Zealand Put To The Test
Despite Abigail Dow bagging a brace of tries to supplement an earlier five-pointer courtesy of Marlie Packer, England found themselves under intense pressure during the closing stages of their penultimate round clash with Canada.
Karen Paquin, Alysha Corrigan and Tyson Beukeboom all crossed the whitewash to keep the Maple Leafs within striking distance of their much-fancied opponents.
Emily Scarratt’s third penalty of the contest ultimately propelled England towards a 26-19 victory, but the Six Nations champions have been severely road tested.
The same can be said for New Zealand, who recorded a 25-24 success over France in Saturday’s second semi-final.
Although Stacey Fluhler, Ruby Tui and Theresa Fitzpatrick recorded tries for the Black Ferns, their efforts were matched on the opposite side of the field by Romane Ménager (two) and Gabrielle Vernier.
In the end, it was an extra point off the kicking tee that helped the southern hemisphere side to squeeze over the line.
Whereas Caroline Drouin amassed nine points for France, Renee Holmes and Ruahei Demant came away with five each for the victors.
Considering the smallest winning margin at the quarter-final stage was Canada’s 21-point success (32-11) over the United States, these two games brought the tournament to life.
A Familiar World Cup Final Pairing This Weekend
Given how little there is to separate the two teams on paper, another grand spectacle is expected at Eden Park this Saturday.
To suggest England and New Zealand are familiar foes in the World Cup would be the proverbial understatement.
This will be the fifth final between these two teams in just six tournaments with the one exception being the 2014 showpiece between the English and Canada.
It is an outstanding achievement for the Red Roses to make a sixth consecutive decider and even though they will be favourites with the best betting sites for rugby union, but they will be hoping to get one over on New Zealand at long last.
The Black Ferns had the measure of them in the 2002, 2006, 2010 and 2017 finals, and are yet to lose out to their northern hemisphere opponents in a World Cup match.
That said, the Kiwis did suffer comprehensive back-to-back reversals to England in the autumn of 2021.
New Zealand have since appointed a new head coach in the form of Wayne Smith, but an upturn in form - 11 straight wins in the space of five months - hasn’t been enough to install them as frontrunners for this weekend’s World Cup final.
England Edge Out Black Ferns As Favourites For The Title
On an extraordinary winning run of 30 tests that stretches all the way back to November 2019, Simon Middleton’s England are the choice among betting apps for World Cup supremacy.
The English are rated at 4/9 to emerge with the silverware on offer. Although New Zealand are outsiders coming into Saturday’s final, there isn’t much of a gap in betting between them and England.
You can get 2/1 in William Hill on the Black Ferns holding onto their World Cup crown and the odds are even shorter with other UK bookmakers.
Stalemate Can’t Be Discounted In Auckland
There has been one draw between these sides in the past - a cagey 8-8 stalemate at Molesey Road in Esher on December 3, 2011.
The longest odds available on their latest meeting finishing level this weekend are 25/1 on Ladbrokes.
Because of some much-discussed issues off the field, New Zealand were only second favourites coming into this tournament.
Nevertheless, there does appear to be a unity of purpose within their ranks at the moment and the Black Ferns are more than capable of defying the bookmakers.
Yet England are an extremely well-drilled side, and it will take a gargantuan effort to deny them their third World Cup victory.
France And Canada Clash For Third Spot
Of course, this isn’t the only encounter taking place at the World Cup on Saturday. In the day’s curtain-raiser, France and Canada will clash in the third-place play-off.
Their search for a first final appearance will extend into the 2025 tournament in England, but Les Bleus are no strangers to a podium finish.
On no fewer than six occasions, the French have claimed third spot in the Women’s World Cup.
Even though Canada did reach the 2014 decider - after defeating host nation France in the last-four - the North Americans have lost all three of the third-place play-offs they have played thus far.
As a result, it is little surprise that the French are 1/5 favourites with 888sport to end this year’s tournament on a high.
Canada remain a difficult proposition on their day however, and with odds of 7/2 available on them winning this precursor to the World Cup showpiece could make for interesting viewing.
There are much longer odds on the game finishing in a draw with Coral rating this prospect at 33/1.
Based on how the two teams have approached their fixtures to date in the tournament, we can expect a fast-paced and intense game of rugby when these two teams meet in Auckland.
With any luck, the same will be true of the mouthwatering showdown between England and New Zealand.
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