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Rugby World Cup 2023 Betting Odds

Matthew Glazier for Bookies.com

Matthew Glazier  | 5 mins

Rugby World Cup 2023 Betting Odds

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The 2023 Rugby World Cup takes place between 8 September – 28 October, with 20 nations battling it out for the biggest prize in the sport of rugby union. The teams are split into four groups of five teams, with the top two countries in each section going through to compete in the knockout phase.

France are the host nation and also one of the favourites with rugby betting sites to land an overall victory, with New Zealand, Ireland and South Africa also expected to mount a challenge. The next teams in the betting are England and Australia, while Wales and Argentina will also be targeting a quarter-final spot.

Bookies will prepare lots of antepost Rugby World Cup betting markets as well as pricing up each of the matches that take place. Many customers will be looking to place rugby union accumulators with free bets, while Bet Builders are also likely to be popular for this tournament, along with in-play wagering. 

South Africa and New Zealand Dominant in Recent World Cups

The past four Rugby World Cups have gone the way of either South Africa or New Zealand. It was the Springboks who triumphed in 2019 when beating England in the final, having beaten the same opponents in 2007 when landing their second triumph when the tournament was last hosted in France.

In between those successes, the All Blacks were able to secure back-to-back successes in 2011 and 2015. The first of these wins came on home soil when narrowly beating France  8-7 in the final, while the 2015 success was far more emphatic when overcoming Australia 34-17 at Twickenham Stadium.

Both teams have won a total of three World Cups, with Australia having two successes to their name (1991 and 1999), while England had that memorable drop-goal victory in the final of the 2003 tournament. France have been finalists on three separate occasions – will this be the year that they break their duck? 

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Rugby World Cup Betting Trends

Although 20 nations are lining up to compete in the 2023 Rugby World Cup, we can draw a line through over half of them when considering the overall winner. There’s a big gulf in quality between the leading teams compared to some of the lesser lights, with the winner of this tournament always trading at single-figure odds on sports betting apps before a match has been played.

However, home advantage is not necessarily something that benefits teams based on Rugby World Cup history. Only South Africa (1995) and New Zealand (2011) have triumphed on home soil, and there have been far more cases of the host nation falling short along the way, with hosts England actually eliminated at the group stage of the 2015 tournament.

When it comes to the various matches in the group stage, customers should anticipate some one-sided matches. Therefore, the handicap market can be more interesting than the actual match odds on the best rugby betting sites. Here, you can choose to back one of the favourites to overcome a certain deficit or the underdog to prosper with a specific points head start.

It's sometimes the case that the outsider is able to keep things relatively tight until half-time, and there has previously been merit in backing them on the first-half handicap before they eventually run out of legs and fatigue sets in.

How to Back Winners in the Rugby World Cup Outright Market

Most sportsbooks are offering one third of the odds for the first two places on their each-way betting. Therefore, with every team trading at 3/1 or bigger, you can secure your money back if your chosen country reaches the final of the World Cup, with France and New Zealand trading at the shortest prices at the time of writing.

It’s worth a cursory look at the tournament draw with France and New Zealand both in Pool A. The bad news for these sides is that they’re likely to face South Africa or Ireland at the quarter-final stage of the competition. Meanwhile, Wales and Australia in Pool C will likely go up against either England, Japan or Argentina, which is clearly a more favourable draw.

We certainly think that the Pool B winner (South Africa or Ireland) could be the team that lifts the trophy. They would face the runner-up of Pool A, but then their task might be even easier considering that the semi-final opponent might be Australia or Argentina. It could be worth taking a watching brief before deciding which way to bet.

About the Author

Matthew Glazier for Bookies.com
Matthew Glazier
Matthew Glazier, the former Head of Marketing at bet365, is a veteran in the online betting industry and contributes to Bookies.com.