Autumn Internationals week 2 tips: England to end 10-year wait for Springboks win
2016 Autumn Internationals week 2 tips
The Autumn Internationals continue after last week’s historic triumph for Ireland over New Zealand, as England enter the fray to face South Africa.
Other high-profile encounters besides the Red Rose playing the Proteas see Scotland and Australia go head-to-head and Wales face Argentina. The All Blacks against Italy and Irish clashing with Canada don’t even look half as competitive by comparison.
Coral’s rugby union expert gives detailed Autumn Internationals week 2 tips, picking out top England v South Africa odds, best Scotland v Australia bets and proffered Wales v Argentina punts.
England v South Africa odds
England haven’t beaten initial Autumn Internationals opponents South Africa for a decade during a 12-Test winless run, yet the Springboks are on their worst run of form for a decade after losing five of the last nine matches.
Something’s got to give, and the Rainbow Nation look to be making some risky experiments with their XV. Pieter-Steph du Toit switches from lock to flanker among the forwards. Last time he played in the back row, South Africa lost to Japan!
Meanwhile, in the backs, Francois Venter makes his debut at centre, though Pat Lambie reprises his familiar fly half role after playing at full back last time out.
Pietersen return a plus for struggling Springboks
JP Pietersen is a welcome return on the wing, but Bryan Habana isn’t involved. Add up the changes there, in midfield, at half back and in the second and third rows, and just six Springboks start in the same position from last time out.
No wonder they’re 4/1 outsiders to upset the hosting Red Rose, who start as firm 1/6 favourites to keep their unbeaten run under Eddie Jones going. It’s very worrying when previous Proteas crawl out the woodwork and say the Springboks are there for taking!
Pietersen is South Africa’s obvious threat at 7/4 for a try anytime, but Du Toit also chips in with the occasional crossing and thus makes an intriguing punt as a 6/1 shot.
Yarde wincast for Red Rose appeals
Jones is forced into six changes himself with wingers Anthony Watson and Jack Nowell joining centre Jonathan Joseph on the treatment table. That means a full international debut for Elliot Daly in midfield in midfield, Jonny May down one side and Marland Yarde down the other.
Yarde, who has scored tries in his last two Red Rose starts, is a worthy 11/8 favourite to cross again anytime and also features in a superb 7/4 wincast.
England’s other alterations are at flanker and lock, with Down Under summer Tour hero James Haskell, Maro Itoje and George Kruis all injured.
Vunipola vying with Whiteley in back row battle
Tom Wood is recalled on the openside for a first international in a year, while Joe Launchbury and Courtney Lawes return in the second row. What’s important is the dual playmaker system of George Ford at fly half and kicker Owen Farrell at inside centre remains.
Billy Vunipola looks set to outshine opposite number eight Warren Whiteley (5/1 anytime) here, so may be worth a wager for another Red Rose try at 3/1. Whiteley has been the man over for two of the Springboks’ last six crossings, though, so it makes for a compelling personal battle.
Full back Mike Brown also carries considerable threat for the home team, and is a 5/2 alternative in the anytime market among England v South Africa odds.
Scotland v Australia bets
When it comes to the Wallabies, Scotland have a brilliant recent record of two wins in the last four and have gone down fighting when losing the other couple.
During the Rugby World Cup quarter-finals last year, Tartan Army hearts were broken by a controversial single point loss to the Aussies, though Vern Cotter’s crew invoked the Braveheart spirit.
Scotland are far from rank outsiders at 3/1, then, to beat Michael Cheika’s side (1/4 match favourites), who returned to form in spectacular fashion over fellow Celtic country Wales last time out.
Kuridrani wincast makes plenty of sense
Four different Australian backs went over in Cardiff, so Cheika has kept the changes to a minimum, with just Will Genia in for Nick Phipps at scrum half.
Of the tryscorers last time out, centre Tevia Kuridrani also crossed against the Scots, so is a 15/8 anytime chance as well as featuring in a nifty 9/4 Wallabies wincast.
Aussie fly half Bernard Foley is also value at 9/2 anytime after two tries in his last six Tests, and his battle with opposite number Finn Russell is one of the key individual clashes.
Go the whole Hogg betting on Scotland full back
Just six of Cotter’s crew that completed a summer whitewash of Japan keep their places for the hosts at Murrayfield.
Now competing on home soil again, many Scottish hope will as ever be pinned on kicker Greig Laidlaw and full back Stuart Hogg, who impressed during the Six Nations in the spring.
Hogg at 3/1 is of far greater value to punters when it comes to Scotland v Australia bets looking for a Tartan team tryscorer than fellow number 15 Israel Folau (6/5).
Wales v Argentina punts
One thing that will encourage supporters of out-of-form Wales is the fact they’ve won four of the last five Tests against Argentina, so start as 4/7 favourites to end their poor run of form by pouncing on the Pumas.
The Dragons have injuries (that might explain one win in seven), but what’s new? Welsh rugby seems plagued by them, though the hosts cannot afford to be complacent against the improving Argentines, who are as short as 7/5 to record victory in Cardiff.
The regular handicap market being set at four points seems a little conservative, so taking an alternative and having faith that Wales will bounce back rewards punters.
Give the Dragons a 13-point deficit to overcome at 9/4, because they’ve covered such a handicap in their last three victories over the Pumas.
North needs a try, so back winger in wincast
While Wales make half a dozen changes, including Sam Warburton at flanker and Alun Wyn Jones in the second row, it’s their enforced alteration that is of interest when it comes to rugby betting.
An ankle injury leaves Rhys Webb out at scrum half, but it’s a position from which Gareth Davies demonstrated a proclivity for getting tries from during the World Cup and Six Nations. Back Davies to deliver again at 5/1 to cross anytime, as he ably deputises in the number nine shirt.
Winger George North, meanwhile, has two tries in his last three against Argentina and needs to go over to stop his international year fizzling out. A tempting 2/1 wincast says the 2016 Six Nation top tryscorer can grab five points and the Dragons defeat the Pumas.
Winger absences work against Argentina
The travelling South Americans surprisingly start Santiago Cordero, who has five tries in six coming into this game, on the bench. Fellow wing Juan Imhoff continues to miss out too, leaving the threat to come from full back Joaquin Tuculet.
At a tasty 9/4 anytime, Tuculet is better value than respective 11/8 chances Ramiro Moyano and Matias Moroni, who looks a little short at that price with just five crossings in 16 caps for Argentina.
In-form Pumas number eight Facundo Isa could pose problems for Wales with opposite number Toby Faletau missing, and he’s an awesome 11/4 to add to two tries in his last three Pumas outings.
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