This weekend’s predictions!

Date published: November 22 2014

It is that time of the week where we put our head on the chopping block with Planet Rugby’s weekend predictions.

It is that time of the week where we put our head on the chopping block with Planet Rugby’s weekend predictions.

A busy weekend features a whole host of major Test matches from Paris to Kilmarnock, while the Premiership and Pro12 are back in action as well.

Keeping tabs on all international and domestic matters, we’ve scoured the odds to pick out the best offers that Paddy Power have on display this week. Strap in.

November Tests

Wales v New Zealand

The All Blacks are there for the taking, Wales say! Well we’re not convinced, as New Zealand arrive in Cardiff as 1/8 favourites.

With a record of no wins over the All Blacks since 1953 the omens are not positive, but a slender win by 1-12 is down at 5/1, with even a slender half-time lead of under seven points on offer at 9/2.

A whole host of options when it comes the first try scorers however do stand out, as Julian Savea leads the way at 5/1.

Other All Blacks in that frame worth considering include Ben Smith at 10/1, Kieran Read at 14/1 and Wales wings George North (12/1) and Alex Cuthbert (14/1).

What a day too for Richie McCaw, who is 6/1 as an anytime scorer on his 100th Test as captain, while a Julian Savea hat-trick is 10/1.

Finally, look out for the All Blacks to pick up the first yellow card at 3/1, while the prospect of New Zealand winning to nil? 16/1.

Based on recent history, we’re expecting the visitors to emerge on top in Cardiff by 15 points.

Ireland v Australia

The handicap is -2 on Ireland which, if we were forced to make a call, would be taken as a refreshed side tackles a Wallaby line-up coming off the back of a tough defeat to France. For example, back into the XV comes Paul O’Connell, Conor Murray, Jonathan Sexton and many more.

Although we like Ireland by 1-10 points at 17/10, there’s also value in Henry Speight (13/5) to cross anytime while Michael Hooper is 40/1 to score two like he did last year. Australia have too many threats not to cross so Tevita Kuridrani (20/1) for the first try looks good.

Furthermore, we just wonder whether the Wallabies may become fatigued after a long domestic and international year so the Australia half-time, Ireland full-time option at 5/1 is tempting, particularly with a powerful set of forwards emerging off the bench for the home side.

England v Samoa

Before the teams were announced, we were expecting something of a procession for England against a side who have, unsurprisingly due to their off-field issues, been out of sorts. However, the England backline named does not inspire free-flowing try-happy action wide out.

Samoa’s players will be fired up for this one and therefore it’s worth a go on one of their starters being first try-scorer, particularly with the healthy prices being offered. Alapati Leiua is 19/1, Kahn Fotuali’i is 33/1, Johnny Leota is 50/1 while Jack Lam is a tasty 66/1.

England though should turn the screw up front at some point and Ben Morgan is surely a cert to get over anytime at 9/4, with Samoa set to struggle to contain the driving maul. Therefore the visitors receiving the first yellow card at 4/9 may be worth going in your weekend accumulator.

France v Argentina

France are favoured by 12 points for the game at the Stade de France, and while they would have covered that margin in each of their last two games against Argentina, we quite fancy los Pumas to stay competitive in this one. Prior to the last two blowouts, les Bleus hadn’t won by more than a score since the 1999 World Cup and it’s worth remembering that one of those hammerings came against a weakened Argentina side.

In the tryscorer market, Camille Lopez at 25/1 stands out as a decent bet for the first score. The Clermont fly-half loves to attack the line, and with an inexperienced Argentinian back row, there’s a chance he might spot a gap or two. He’s only got one try to his name this season, but it could be worth a punt here. Elsewhere Manuel Montero at 14/1 is also tempting, although he’s now gone three Tests without a try. France by six!

Other Test predictions:
Italy v South Africa – Springboks by 18
Scotland v Tonga – Scotland by 15
Romania v Canada – Canada by 10
Portugal v Namibia – Namibia by 11

Aviva Premiership

As ever, look out each week for our SuperBru predictions and join our league here.

Harlequins v Sale

The Sharks thrashed London Irish last weekend while Harlequins picked up a rare win at Gloucester, setting up a fine contest on Friday in London.

Look out for a Sale away win at 5/2, or a Harlequins win by 11-15 points at 5/1. Danny Cipriani is a 10/1 anytime try scorer. Ollie Lindsay-Hague leads the first try scoring odds at 8/1. Harlequins by five.

More SuperBru picks:

Newcastle v Gloucester – Falcons by 6
Exeter v Wasps – Exeter by 3
Irish v Bath – Bath by 10
Saracens v Northampton – Saracens by 5
Welsh v Leicester – Leicester by 30

Guinness PRO12

Look out for our SuperBru predictions for the weekend, here.

Glasgow v Ulster

With the internationals away there could be a few surprises in store in the Pro12. Glasgow have lost just once all season, away at Ulster, but they could come unstuck at the Scarlets this weekend.

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