The Springboks, Argentina, the Sharks, Western Province and the Cheetahs are all favourites to win this weekend, writes GARY LEMKE.
The good news is that the Springboks will beat the All Blacks at Ellis Park. The bad news is that the New Zealanders will get at least one bonus point, which will be enough to secure them the Castle Rugby Championship. That's the way the bookies see things unfolding in Johannesburg.
One of the more interesting bets on offer is that the Boks are 6-1 to lift the title. That's in the event of them running in four tries or more and restricting the All Blacks to no bonus points. Therefore a scoreline in the region of 33-21 to the Boks would likely give them the trophy and punters the chance to cash in at 6-1.
Yet, if you want to back the All Blacks to win the Rugby Championship then you'd have to buy money. They're at 1-10 to lift the trophy, which means for every R10 you put down you only get R11 back in return, whereas for every R10 you stick on the Boks you'd get R70 in return, if they claimed the silverware.
So, the odds are that it will be a bittersweet victory for the Boks. The online bookies, including Marshalls World of Sport, have set the handicap spread between the two teams – at around the even-money (double your money) odds – at two points. Therefore, the All Blacks start 2-0 down. If you fancy the Boks to win (and want to double your money) then they will need to be three points or more ahead when Nigel Owens blows the final whistle.
Possibly the value can be held in some of the following bets available (remember the second figure is your stake and your return is to add both figures):
30-10: Boks to score first with a penalty and go on to win.
40-10: Boks to score first with a penalty and go on to lose.
190-50 (I like this one): All Blacks to score first with a penalty and Boks go on to win.
60-10: Boks to be leading at half-time but All Blacks win.
60-10: All Blacks to be leading at half-time but Boks win.
110-80: Boks to lead at half-time and win.
In the other Rugby Championship match, Argentina have been priced up to claim the scalp of Australia, which would signal a nightmare campaign for new Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie. In straight betting – ie, which side will win – Argentina are 5-6 which means for every R60 you put on them you get a R110 return, while for Australia (21-20) for every R60 you put on them to win (and they did) you'd receive R123 in return.
In the Currie Cup betting, based on the even-money spread, the Cheetahs are favourites to beat Griquas by three points – the wheels fell off for the Kimberley boys last week and I reckon the Cheetahs are good value to be backed at the odds here. Western Province are fancied to beat the Lions by at least five points at Newlands and the Sharks are favourites to go to Loftus and topple the Bulls, by at least two points.
Photo: Anthony Au-Yeung/Getty Images
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