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Rugby World Cup Pool C: New Zealand to annihilate Namibia

Although they are Coral’s 11/10 tournament favourites to win the Rugby World Cup, New Zealand had to dig deep in their Pool C opener against Argentina rather than laying down an early marker that they mean business.

The All Blacks showed their grit by coming from behind against their improving Southern Hemisphere Rugby Championship rivals to run out 26-16 winners, but now get their chance to show us all what they can do when they face African minnows Namibia.

What punters will witness on Thursday from the Olympic Stadium in London is full-time professionals rated the best in the world against a squad that fit their rugby around other jobs.

“We’ve got engineers, diamond traders, farmers and construction workers,” said Namibia captain and star player Jacques Burger, before adding: “And a dentist, which is handy.”

Rugby Union - Aviva Premiership - Saracens v Worcester Rugby - Allianz Park

Romanticism, the like of which football fans yearn for in FA Cup ties between similarly unequal opponents, can swiftly be put to one side, however, as New Zealand are simply nailed on a 1/1000 to win, and Namibia massive 66/1 outsiders.

Japan have already caused one seismic shock at this Rugby World Cup, so that proves it’s not impossible for lesser teams to triumph against all odds, but a repeat of their South Africa giant-killing really isn’t likely here.

Namibia have never won a Rugby World Cup game in 15 attempts, and a less than sweet 16 without success is virtually certain. The handicap market is set at a deficit of 78 for the All Blacks to overturn at evens, and that is just over half their opponents’ record 142-0 loss to Australia back in 2003.

A similarly massive winning margin, showing Namibia no sentiment whatsoever, is expected from New Zealand here, and 100 points or more appeals in Coral’s enhanced matchday special of 5/1. Punters can stake a maximum bet of £20 on this.

Rugby Union -  Rugby World Cup 2015 - Pool A - New Zealand v Argentina - Wembley Stadium

Julian Savea, an already prolific All Blacks winger with 30 tries in just 36 caps, should fill his boots here, and is a nifty 9/2 to cross over first.

Coral’s top tip: Back New Zealand for a sensational century with them winning by more than 101 points at a fabulous 5/2.