New Zealand vs. South Africa, Twickenham, England, Sunday, October 25, 2.00am
WELCOME to the business end of the 2015 Rugby World Cup, where two classic rivals go head-to-head in the first semi-final this weekend.
New Zealand and South Africa have had two very different tournaments, but they ultimately meet again in another finals game in the World Cup and the history between these two sides adds an exciting element to this game.
Both teams play in the Rugby Championship, so they know exactly what to expect this Sunday morning, but the World Cup intensifies the competition and we should get yet another All Blacks vs. Springboks classic.
When it comes to rugby, it doesn’t get much better than this, so get stuck in at Sportsbet.com.au – the bookmaker is refunding your bet if your team leads at halftime, but loses the game.
New Zealand vs. South Africa betting tips
New Zealand – $1.26 (-8.5)
South Africa – $3.78 (+8.5)
The All Blacks opened at $1.33, but that price was never going to last long. The punters who got in quick were able to snap up the value odds before the inevitable drop to a more realistic $1.26.
Most punters will be put off by that price, unless they’re including it in multi-bets, but the points start line should be attracting more attention.
$3.78 for South Africa is great money and we can’t recall the last time they were paying that high against the All Blacks in any game, let alone a World Cup semi-final.
That being said, on form, we can’t recommend placing a bet on South Africa in the head-to-head market. They have earned their way into the finals, but New Zealand flexed their muscles against France and the Springbok’s might be next on the menu.
South Africa scored a tough win against Wales, which many punters have underrated – Wales defeated England and narrowly lost to Australia, so that was a credible win in the quarters.
They also have a good winning record against New Zealand at World Cups and a few All Blacks’ upsets have been at the hands of South Africa.
The points start line is more of an even contest. 8.5 means that the All Blacks will have to win by more than a converted try and that has been hard to do in the past.
We’ll get into the history of these teams later, but New Zealand would have covered that spread in only one of their past five games against South Africa, so keep that in mind when looking at the points start market.
Big win, Little win market
The margin betting market is popular among sports bettors as it provides more value. What makes this option interesting is that the points start is -8.5 for New Zealand, but New Zealand to win by 13 points or more is the current margin favourite.
New Zealand 1-12 – $2.50 at Sportsbet.com.au
New Zealand 13+ – $2.40
South Africa 1-12 – $4.50
South Africa 13+ – $15
Draw – $21
This option suggests that punters think New Zealand have a better chance of winning by more than 12 than they do of winning by 1-12, but the points start line suggests otherwise.
There is an element of risk when you’re backing New Zealand 13+ because if you took New Zealand -8.5 you would have a better chance of winning. The extra 48 cents is enough for some punters to risk it, but we would suggest backing New Zealand in the points start market for less risk.
All Blacks vs. Springboks road to the semis
The All Blacks are unbeaten in five games this World Cup and their most recent performance against France was simply a delight to watch.
They kicked things off with a solid 26-16 win over fellow semi-finalist Argentina in their first game of the tournament, and they had three easy games against inferior opposition to follow.
The real test came against France last Sunday, or so we thought. The All Blacks dismantled one of the best teams in the World Cup and they did it in style.
The 62-13 win was their biggest win against France and not one player had a bad game. The forwards were even throwing flick passes out the back – it was beautiful to watch.
All Blacks last five games:
New Zealand 26 – Argentina 16
New Zealand 58 – Namibia 14
New Zealand 43 – Georgia 10
New Zealand 47 – Tonga 7
New Zealand 62 – France 13
South Africa had a very indifferent start to their World Cup, losing to minnows Japan in an embarrassing display of rugby.
The last-minute 32-34 loss rocked the nation, but it may have awoken the beast as their results since have been very impressive.
They smashed Samoa before beating the overachieving Scotland comfortably. A 64-0 win against USA was a practice run before taking on Wales in what proved to be a very tough outing.
South Africa called on their tough defense to score a narrow four-point victory over Wales, which will help them prepare for the attacking prowess of the All Blacks.
South Africa last five games:
South Africa 32 – Japan 34
South Africa 46 – Samoa 6
South Africa 34 – Scotland 16
South Africa 64 – USA 0
South Africa 23 – Wales 19
Over the course of history these two teams have played each other on 90 occasions. The All Blacks have the edge with 52 wins with three draws.
The big difference between these sides over history has been the amount of tries scored. New Zealand have scored a total of 184 tries in their history against South Africa, whereas the Springboks have scored only 139.
Over the past five meetings, New Zealand has won four, with their only loss coming in the Rugby Championship in Johannesburg.
The last time they met was in Joburg this year where the All Blacks scored a late try from Richie McCaw to secure the 27-20 win.
Most of the games played against each other are close, but we can’t get that New Zealand vs. France game out of our heads.
The All Blacks look superior and we’re expecting them to win by more than 8.5 points.
Our tip: New Zealand -8.5 ($1.91) at CrownBet.com.au
New Zealand vs. South Africa Man of the Match odds
Punters get the chance to bet on who they think will win the Man of the Match award, courtesy of Sportsbet.com.au.
Current favourite is All Black Dan Carter who was scintillating against France and he’s a favourable pick among the award judges.
For South Africa it’s Handre Pollard at $8, followed by the always-tough Fourie du Preez at $15.
All Black team and MOTM odds:
Dan Carter – $5
Richie McCaw – $7
Brodie Retallick – $13
Kieran Reid – $13
Aaron Smith – $15
Nehe Milner-Skudder – $18
Julian Savea – $22
Dane Coles – $22
Ben Smith – $22
Conrad Smith – $22 at Sportsbet.com.au
Ma’a Nonu – $22
Jerome Kaino – $24
Sam Whitelock – $30
Kevin Mealamu – $40
Owen Franks – $40
Beauden Barrett – $65
Joe Moody – $81
Sonny Bill Williams – $81
Sam Cane – $81
Charlie Faumuina – $110
Victor Vito – $110
Ben Franks – $110
South Africa team and MOTM odds:
Handre Pollard – $8
Fourie de Preez – $15
Schalk Burger – $18
Lood de Jager – $22
Bismarck de Plessis – $24
Jan Serfontein – $24
Eben Etzebeth – $24
JP Pietersen – $24 at Sportsbet.com.au
Jesse Kriel – $24
Damian de Allende – $30
Bryan Habana – $30
Francois Louw – $30
Willie Le Roux – $30
Patrick Lambie – $40
Victor Matfield – $81
Williem Alberts – $81
Tendai Mtawarira – $81
Ruan Pienaar – $81
Trevor Nyakane – $110
Frans Malherbe – $110
Pieter-Steph du Toit – $110
Adriaan Strauss – $110
Jannie du Plessis – $110
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