This weekend’s predictions!

Date published: June 10 2016

It is that time of the week when we put our heads on the chopping block with Planet Rugby's predictions.

Ding ding, it's the first round of matches for the June internationals, and our big encounter of the weekend sees Australia host England in what promises to be a thrilling clash in Brisbane.

In other action, New Zealand face Wales in Auckland, South Africa take on Ireland in Cape Town and Argentina do battle with Italy in Santa Fé.

There are also several clashes between Tier Two nations. In Apia Samoa go head-to-head against Georgia, Fiji do battle with Tonga in the Pacific Nations Cup opener in Suva and Canada host Japan in Vancouver.

There's also an interesting match-up between South Africa A and the England Saxons in Bloemfontein and several enticing encounters lined up in the second round of matches at World Rugby's U20 World Championship in Manchester.

Paddy Power is our chosen bookie for our rugby bets so without further ado, let's get stuck in to our picks.

June Internationals

New Zealand v Wales

The home side are overwhelming favourites at 1/20 to win the contest, while Warren Gatland's charges are at odds of 7/1 to achieve that feat. 

Wales are like lambs to the slaughter, however, as they have never beaten their hosts in New Zealand, and also lost their last 26 matches against the men in black.

That last statistic means it should be one-way traffic for the world champions and we think an exact winning margin of 15 points for them is a good bet at 25/1. All Blacks winger Waisake Naholo is one of the best finishers in the game and is also worth a flutter at 6/1 to be the first try-scorer.

Australia v England

All eyes will be on the Suncorp Stadium as England try to exact revenge on the Wallabies who, in their previous clash, knocked the host nation out during the pool stages of last year's World Cup. 

Australia are narrow favourites at 8/13 to get the win while England are at odds of 13/10 to secure victory. With both teams evenly matched, a draw looks like a handy option at 22/1.

England to win by between one and five points looks worth a bet at 5/1 while Wallabies centre Tevita Kuridrani also looks a handy option at 16/1 to score the first try. 

South Africa v Ireland

Like the Australia v England clash, this sholud be a much closer affair than the New Zealand v Wales match-up. The Springboks are at home and are favoured to take this one at 1/8 odds with Ireland at 11/2 to claim their first ever win on South African soil.

We think a Springbok drop-goal as the game's opening points is well worth a bet at 50/1 while an Ireland try is also a good option at 9/1 to get the first points on the scoreboard.

Ireland's South African-born flanker CJ Stander is at 4/1 to cross the whitewash during the 80 minutes while our prediction of a Bok victory by an exact winning margin of 10 points could make you rich as it is at odds of 22/1.

Argentina v Italy

Los Pumas will look to continue with their fine Rugby World Cup form when they take on the Azzurri in their own backyard. 

Although Argentina are favoured to win at 1/8, encounters between these teams are usually closely fought and you might fancy a bet on Italy who are 5/1 to take this one. If you're brave enough then put some money on a draw which is at 30/1.

Other June Test predictions:

Samoa v Georgia: Samoa by 5!
Fiji v Tonga: Fiji by 5!
Canada v Japan: Japan by 8!

South Africa A v England Saxons

This is a difficult one to call although the SA A side will have some confidence as they are at home while the Saxons are a classy outfit with more Test experience in their ranks.

We've predicted a Saxons victory by less than five points which is at odds of 6/1.

Top 14 quarter-finals

Racing 92 v Toulouse

Both these sides are evenly matched but we reckon a Racing win by between six and 10 points is worth a flutter at 4/1. 

Toulouse have been unpredictable this season and although they are away from home, they look a handy option to score the first try of the game via a try which is at odds of 8/1.

Racing impressed in their last match against Montpellier, and are also worthwhile at 3/1 to win the race to 30 points.

Montpellier v Castres

Montpellier should take this one at home and with it being a Jake White coached side don't be surprised if they get the opening points via a drop goal which is at 20/1.

A Montpol victory by between one and seven points also looks good at 3/1.

U20 World Championship

England v Scotland

Both these sides have their tails up after solid victories in their opening fixtures. England are favoured to win at 1/7 although you might fancy the Scots who are at 9/2 to beat their hosts.

Other U20 World Championship predictions:

Australia v Italy: Australia by 20!
New Zealand v Ireland: New Zealand by 18!
France v Japan: France by 22!
Wales v Georgia: Wales by 30!
South Africa v Argentina: South Africa by 12!