Rugby World Cup betting: Aussies out to stick with the field

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Updated: September 23, 2015

Rugby World Championship featured betting preview – Pool A: Australia v Fiji, Millennium Stadium, Cardiff, Wales; Thursday, September 24, 1.45am (for nation profiles, click here; for the tournament schedule, click here)

 

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After a couple of days to catch the collective breath after a stunning opening, Rugby World Cup action resumes tonight with the first appearance of Australia in the tournament. With both England and Wales having started with bonus point wins, the Wallabies (winners of both previous World Cups played in Britain) will feel they must do the same in the battle for top spot in a highly competitive Pool A, which includes the world’s second-, third- and fourth-ranked nations. Fiji lost to England by 24 points in a torrid World Cup opener.

But they bombed a certain try and missed four kicks at goal so the 35-11 final score flattered England. Flanker Dominiko Waqaniburotu has been ruled out of the match after being suspended for a dangerous tackle against England and coach John McKee has made three other changes to freshen up his pack as Netani Talei starts at number eight, Tevita Cavubati comes into the second row and Tuapati Talemaitoga takes over at hooker. Fiji has not beaten Australia since 1954 with the average margin in their only three meetings in the past decade a massive 46 points in favour of the Aussies.

 

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As close as Fiji may have come to defeating England if they’d converted their chances, it’s worth noting that Australia are a much better attacking side than the hosts. The Wallabies play differently too, and in a way that could cause significant issues for Fiji especially with inside balls off fly-half Bernard Foley. England’s playmakers very rarely shifted the point of attack against Fiji. It was all very much sideline-to-sideline movement with no real testing of Fiji’s inside shoulder defence against runners cutting back on the angle of play. The Wallabies are masters of shifting the point of attack to inside runners like Israel Folau (pictured above) and Adam Ashley-Cooper.

It’s a tactic that Fiji, historically, has never really coped with terribly well. Australia’s double breakdown threat of David Pocock and Michael Hooper is also sure to produce plenty of quick ball for a lethal backline that can match the Fijians for exciting running on any day. The closed roof should ensure a quality spectacle, and Australia coach Michael Cheika has insisted his team will continue to play an exciting brand of rugby, despite the common perception that conservative game plans are necessary to win the World Cup.

 

 

Confirmed bets (card finalised)

Pool A: Australia -25.5 v Fiji (one unit @ $1.91)

Pool D: France v Romania +37.5 (one unit @ $1.92)

 

Today’s other game

Pool B: Scotland v Japan

 

Most recent results: 4-0, +5.02 units; overall record: 5-0, +6.04 units

Ireland -39.5 v Canada (one unit @ $1.91) WIN (50-7)

France -16.5 v Italy (one unit @ $1.91) WIN (32-10)

Wales @ Uruguay +68 (one unit @ $2.00) WIN (54-9)

Samoa (by 1-12) v USA (one unit @ $3.20) WIN (25-16)

• Selections are listed in three categories – 1) Suggested (likely bet but yet to be finalised); 2) Confirmed (locked in at the price listed); and 3) Leans (tips, but not recommended bets); all times quoted are Australian Eastern Time (AET); prices with thanks to Pinnaclebet (except where markets are not available), correct at time of publication. Results/comments on today’s games/races will follow in the next post.

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