New Zealand rugby team

The odds markets for this year’s upcoming Rugby World Cup in September have been revised across the board after Wales lifted the Grand Slam yesterday with a resounding 25-7 victory over pre-tournament favourites Ireland in Cardiff.

This year’s Six Nations Championship has been a chastening experience for the Irish. Before the tournament, they had been priced at 3/1 to win their first Rugby World Cup in Japan later this year, having lifted the Grand Slam in 2018, arguably the most memorable year in Irish rugby, and one which saw the Green Army remain unbeaten before rounding off with a historic, bruising victory over the All Blacks in Dublin in November.

After this latest crushing Six Nations defeat, however, Irish odds for the World Cup have been revised upwards to 5/1, whilst Wales’ own odds have fallen to 7/1, having previously been priced at 10-1 prior to their impressive Grand Slam success – their fourth in fifteen years, and one which extends their current unbeaten streak to 14 games.

England Emerges as Outright Favourite to Usurp All Blacks

Despite a worrying wobble yesterday at Twickenham against the Scots which saw them throw away a 31 point advantage – before rescuing a draw with a last minute try-and-conversion in what now ranks as the highest scoring draw of all time in international rugby – England have emerged as second-favourites for the upcoming World Cup, priced at 4/1.

It was England’s crushing victory over the Irish in Dublin on the opening day of this year’s Six Nations that confirmed their credentials as serious World Cup contenders. English odds for the tournament have remained unchanged for at least six months now, with Ireland’s collapse and Wales’ ascendancy being the main drivers of the current reshuffle in the odds rankings.

Outright favourites for the tournament, New Zealand, are priced at 11/10 by most British bookmakers, representing a slight revision upwards from a previous price of evens in late 2018. Fellow Southern Hemispherists South Africa and Australia also remained largely unchanged at prices of 8/1 and 12/1 respectively.