2015 Rugby World Cup Final – New Zealand vs Australia – Preview & Betting Tips

The following is a preview with betting tips for the 2015 Rugby World Cup Final between New Zealand and Australia. The content will be updated as more details become available. Active betting promotions have been listed at the bottom of the article.

New Zealand vs. Australia

Stage: Final

Twickenham Stadium, London
November 1, 2015
Kick-off at 3:00 AM AEDT
Referee: Nigel Owens (Wales)
Weather forecast: mostly sunny

New Zealand squad: 1. Joe Moody, 2. Dane Coles, 3. Owen Franks, 4. Brodie Retallick, 5. Sam Whitelock, 6. Jerome Kaino, 7. Richie McCaw (captain), 8. Kieran Read, 9. Aaron Smith, 10. Daniel Carter, 11. Julian Savea, 12. Ma’a Nonu, 13. Conrad Smith, 14. Nehe Milner-Skudder, 15. Ben Smith. Replacements: 16. Keven Mealamu, 17. Ben Franks, 18. Charlie Faumuina, 19. Victor Vito, 20. Sam Cane, 21. Tawera Kerr-Barlow, 22. Beauden Barrett, 23. Sonny Bill Williams

Australia squad: 1. Scott Sio, 2. Stephen Moore (captain), 3. Sekope Kepu, 4. Kane Douglas, 5. Rob Simmons, 6. Scott Fardy, 7. Michael Hooper, 8. David Pocock, 9. Will Genia, 10. Bernard Foley, 11. Drew Mitchell, 12. Matt Giteau, 13. Tevita Kuridrani, 14. Adam Ashley-Cooper, 15. Israel Folau. Replacements: 16. Tatafu Polota-Nau, 17. James Slipper, 18. Greg Holmes, 19. Dean Mumm, 20. Ben McCalman, 21. Nick Phipps, 22. Matt Toomua, 23. Kurtley Beale


Both Australia and New Zealand are bidding to become the first nation to win three World Cups while New Zealand are also aiming to become the first nation to win back-to-back titles. Both teams are in good shape heading into the final, however both have left room for improvement after their semi-final performances.

A key concern for All blacks coach Steve Hansen will be the silly penalties they conceded against the Springboks. They conceded 13 in all compared to 6 for South Africa. While the Springboks never looked like scoring a try, they were kept in the game by the penalty count. The All Blacks also kicked the ball away too often and their scrum wasn’t always steady. With New Zealand expecting an aerial attack on Saturday, they will have concerns about Nehe Milner-Skudder’s ability under the high ball after he was beaten a number of times by Bryan Habana last week.

The Wallabies put in an improved performance against Argentina after they perhaps got ahead of themselves against Scotland. Their defence was solid, however they did benefit from a few mistakes by Argentina. One concern is that their scrum was penalised five times against Argentina. It is expected that Scott Sio will return this week to replace James Slipper, however, who was pinged three times during the game. Another aspect of the performance that will have fans worried was the extent to which the Wallabies faded late in the game. The All Blacks are known for being strong finishers so fitness could be an issue for Australia. Also, Israel Folau didn’t look right physically against Argentina, which appeared to affect his confidence. The Wallabies will need to fire on all cylinders if they are to upset the All Blacks so Folau’s form will be a concern.

In team news, All Blacks captain Richie McCaw was not cited for an alleged use of the elbow against the Springboks – his hip accidentally hit the player – so he is clear to play. Wallabies loose-head prop Scott Sio looks set to return after missing the semi-final with an elbow injury. It is expected that he will return to the starting line-up at the expense of James Slipper. Rob Horne will also be available for selection.

What’s to like about the All Blacks

Winning record – I could go on and on about the All Blacks’ winning record. They have only lost to the Wallabies once in the last four years. Since September 2011 they boast a 55-2-3 record against all opponents. That record speaks of the skill set of the team, but it also breeds confidence, composure and belief that they can win tight matches. Last week’s 20-18 win over the Springboks was a classic example of that. The All Blacks trailed at the 50-minute mark but never pressed the panic button. Once they took the lead they never surrendered it, with the Springboks never threatening in the final ten minutes.

Bouncing back – the All Blacks have a habit of putting in strong performances immediately after poor ones and they weren’t satisfied with their performance against the Springboks last week. Earlier this year the All Blacks defeated the Wallabies 41-13 just one week after losing 27-19. In 2014 the All Blacks won 51-20 just a week after drawing 12-12. It appears that the worst time to face New Zealand is on the back of a disappointing All Blacks performance.

Wayne Smith – many pundits have been comparing the relative merits of head coaches Michael Cheika for the Wallabies and Steve Hansen for the All Blacks, but you can’t underestimate the impact of Wayne Smith in the backroom for the All Blacks. He is regarded as one of the best minds in rugby and has played a big role in both the 2011 and 2015 World Cup campaigns. Smith is known for looking at the All Blacks from the outside to provide insights that players often don’t pick up on. Smith previously won two Super Rugby titles with the Crusaders before coaching the All Blacks for two years up until 2001. He was also an assistant coach for the Chiefs when they won two titles in 2012-13. In Wayne Smith the All Blacks have arguably the best assistant coach in the world.

Fitness – the All Blacks are regarded as being the fittest side in world rugby and they’ve had an extra day to prepare for this Test. The Wallabies faded late against the Pumas last week, while the All Blacks finished strongly against the Springboks after trailing at the break. The Wallabies enter this fixture having to make 157 tackles against Argentina, while New Zealand only had to make 83 tackles against South Africa. There is also more walking wounded for the Wallabies, with Israel Folau and David Pocock playing last week despite not being 100%. Scott Sio will return, but given his limited training last week there’s a fair chance he won’t be 100% either.

What’s to like about the Wallabies

Pocock & Hooper combination – the last time the Wallabies played with Michael Hooper and David Pocock together they defeated the All Blacks 27-19. While they were comprehensively beaten 41-13 a week later, the Wallabies didn’t play their best hand that week, opting to start Quade Cooper rather than Foley and not use Hooper and Pocock in tandem. The All Blacks did manage to snuff Pocock out as a threat in the 2011 World Cup semi-final, but that was at Eden Park and Pocock didn’t have Hooper working with him in tandem back then.

Timing & Cheika – the Wallabies have peaked at just the right time, going 10-1 in their last eleven Tests. Despite taking over in calamitous circumstances in 2014, Michael Cheika has a 73% win percentage, which is second only to Rod Macqueen for a Wallabies coach.

Underdog status – the pressure is off. Bookmakers have installed the All Blacks as firm favourites so the Wallabies won’t have to play with the threat of being called chokers should they lose.


Note that the odds may have shifted since this article was last update. Click here to compare the latest Rugby World Cup odds.

You have to go back to 2008 for the last time Australia beat New Zealand by more than 8 points so if you are planning on backing the Wallabies in the head-to-head (3.10-3.20 with most bookmakers) at you might want to consider taking Australia 1-12 at 4.30 (Pinnacle Sports) instead.

Of New Zealand’s last 12 victories over the Wallabies, 6 were by more than 13 points, however 5 of those 6 wins were at the All Blacks’ fortress, Eden Park. Of the last 7 All Blacks’ wins outside Eden Park, only one was by more than 12 points.

I’m on the fence with the 6.5 line market. The bookmakers looked to have set the line about right.

If you want to play it conservatively I recommend the following pairs of wagers:
3 Units on New Zealand to win – 1.42 (William Hill)
1 Unit on Australia 1-12 – 4.30 (Pinnacle Sports)
Given two the last nine meetings were drawn, you might want to cover yourself for the draw as well. At the time of writing the best available draw odds were 26.48 (after commission) with Matchbook.

If you simply fancy New Zealand the 1.42 head-to-head odds with William Hill look to be reasonable value.

If you’re looking to be more aggressive I would recommend New Zealand 1-12 at 2.55 with Luxbet because I anticipate this will be close.

If you’re on the fence you can get “Either Side 1-7 or Draw” at 2.10 with Luxbet.

Betting tip: I expect Australia will be competitive in the first half and then fade late in the second spell. I would go for the value and take “Australia / New Zealand” in the HT/FT double market at 7.00 (William Hill)

New Zealand
New Zealand
(-6.5)  1.98
(+6.5)  1.93
(-6.5)  1.80
(+6.5)  2.00
(-6.0)  1.91
(+6.0)  1.91
(-6.5)  1.97
(+6.5)  1.84


Form Guide: New Zealand

Date (y-m-d) Fixture Result Score
2015-10-25 South Africa vs. New Zealand Win 18-20
2015-10-18 New Zealand vs. France Win 62-13
2015-10-10 New Zealand vs. Tonga Win 47-9
2015-10-03 New Zealand vs. Georgia Win 43-10
2015-09-25 New Zealand vs. Namibia Win 58-14
2015-09-21 New Zealand vs. Argentina Win 26-16
2015-08-15 New Zealand vs. Australia Win 41-13
2015-08-08 Australia vs. New Zealand Loss 27-19

Form Guide: Australia

Date (y-m-d) Fixture Result Score
2015-10-26 Argentina vs. Australia Win 15-29
2015-10-19 Australia vs. Scotland Win 35-34
2015-10-11 Australia vs. Wales Win 15-6
2015-10-04 England vs. Australia Win 13-33
2015-09-28 Australia vs. Uruguay Win 65-3
2015-09-24 Australia vs. Fiji Win 28-13
2015-09-05 USA vs. Australia Win 10-47
2015-08-15 New Zealand vs. Australia Loss 41-13

H2H Guide: New Zealand vs. Australia

Date (y-m-d) Fixture Score
2015-08-15 New Zealand vs. Australia 41-13
2015-08-08 Australia vs. New Zealand 27-19
2014-10-18 Australia vs. New Zealand 28-29
2014-08-23 New Zealand vs. Australia 51-20
2014-08-16 Australia vs. New Zealand 12-12
2013-10-19 New Zealand vs. Australia 41-33
2013-08-24 New Zealand vs. Australia 27-16
2013-08-17 Australia vs. New Zealand 29-47

Note: only league games are included. The above does not include preseason and cup fixtures.

Value Guides:

Team Market Last 6 Last 12 Last 18
New Zealand H2H $0.40 $0.38 $0.10
Australia H2H $1.98 $2.97 $-0.29

The above figures represent the net profit from wagering $1.00 on the associated selection each game.



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