The following is a preview with betting tips for the Rugby Championship Week 4 clash between the Wallabies and Pumas. The game kicks off at 8:05 PM AEST on Saturday the 13th of September. The venue is Cbus Super Stadium on the Gold Coast and the referee is Glen Jackson from New Zealand.
|15 – Fullback||Israel Folau||Joaquín Tuculet|
|14 – Right Wing||Peter Betham||Juan Imhoff|
|13 – Outside Centre||Tevita Kuridrani||Marcelo Bosch|
|12 – Inside Centre||Matt Toomua||Juan Martín Hernández|
|11 – Left Wing||Rob Horne||Manuel Montero|
|10 – Fly-half||Bernard Foley||Nicolás Sánchez|
|9 – Scrum Half||Nick Phipps||Martín Landajo|
|8 – Number Eight||Ben McCalman||Leonardo Senatore|
|7 – Openside Flanker||Michael Hooper (c)||Juan Martín Fernández Lobbe|
|6 – Blindside Flanker||Scott Fardy||Juan Manuel Leguizamón|
|5 – Right Lock||Rob Simmons||Matías Alemanno|
|4 – Left Lock||Sam Carter||Mariano Galarza|
|3 – Tighthead Prop||Sekope Kepu||Ramiro Herrera|
|2 – Hooker||Tatafu Polota-Nau||Agustín Creevy (c)|
|1 – Loosehead Prop||James Slipper||Marcos Ayerza|
|16||James Hanson||Matías Cortese|
|17||Pekahou Cowan||Bruno Postiglioni|
|18||Ben Alexander||Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro|
|19||James Horwill||Benjamín Macome|
|20||Scott Higginbotham||Rodrigo Baez|
|21||Matt Hodgson||Tomás Cubelli|
|22||Nic White||Jerónimo de la Fuente|
|23||Kurtley Beale||Lucas González Amorosino|
In one change to the backs, Adam Ashley-Cooper is out with a neck injury so Peter Betham will start on the right wing. In the forwards, Ben McCalman comes in for the injured Wycliff Palu at No.8 while hooker Tatafu Polota-Nau returns from injury with James Hanson dropping to the bench. In anticipation of a physical style of rugby employed by the Argentinian forwards, coach Ewen McKenzie has again opted for a forwards-heavy 6-2 split on the bench. Kurtley Beale will again start on the bench this week after making a positive impact as a substitute last week.
Argentine wingers Horacio Agulla and Lucas Gonzalez Amorosino have been dropped after disappointing performances last weekend in Napier. Juan Imhoff and Manuel Montero will start in their place. Lock Tomas Lavanini has received a one-match suspension for dangerous play last weekend and has been replaced by Matias Alemanno.
Los Pumas haven’t beaten the Wallabies since 1997. Their previous and only win over the Wallabies on Australian soil was back in 1983. Below are the most recent results. Since the Rugby Championship began the Pumas have been more competitive against the Wallabies on Australian soil than they have been on home soil. This may be due to the fatigue factor because Argentina always host Australia in the final week of the competition.
2013: Argentina 17 – 54 Australia (Rosario)
2013: Australia 14 – 13 Argentina (Perth)
2012: Argentina 19 – 25 Australia (Rosario)
2012: Australia 23 – 19 Argentina (Gold Coast)
Argentina were competitive in three of their four previous Tests against Australia in the Rugby Championship. Their strength is their scrum, which matches up well against the Wallabies. Last week against the All Blacks the Pumas were down by just two points leading into the half, but conceded tries either side of half-time to fall out of the contest. The Wallabies should win this, however if the Pumas play as well as they did against the Springboks and All Blacks, this will be close.
As is to be expected, the Wallabies have been installed as heavy favourites for this clash. At the time of writing the best available head-to-head odds are 1.21 for the Wallabies and 5.00 for Los Pumas. Click here to compare the latest Rugby Championship odds.
Argentina’s previous two visits to Australia resulted in 4-point and 1-point losses and I expect them to be similarly competitive on Saturday. I would back Argentina +16.5 at 1.50 (Sportsbet).
Since the Rugby Championship began, three of Australia’s four wins over Argentina were by six points or less. I would back the Wallabies 1-12 at 2.55 (Sportingbet).
As a side bet, keep an eye out for Israel Folau in the first tryscorer and anytime tryscorer markets. He scored the opening try in both Tests between the Wallabies and Pumas last year. In all he scored four tries against Argentina in 2013.
If you were dropped on your head as a baby
Three of the six Rugby Championship Tests so far this year have been settled by two points or less. I would make the following three correct winning margin wagers:
Draw at 31.00 (Sportingbet)
Australia by 1 at 29.00 (Sportingbet)
Australia by 2 at 29.00 (Sportingbet)