Excitement is high ahead of the 1st of 3 test matches between the Springboks and Wales taking place at what will be a packed Loftus on Saturday. We take a look at the game from a betting angle.
The Springboks 2021 campaign was something of a mixed bag, a 2-1 series victory over the British and Irish Lions and a 3rd place finish in the Rugby Championship. They then went north in November edging Wales by 5, Scotland by 15, but losing to England by a single point. Expectations will be high from the public not having had the opportunity to watch the Boks live for the last couple of years.
Wales last action was in early 2022 in the Six Nations where they were very disappointing with their only victory coming against Scotland. I wouldn’t read much into the year-end hiding they took against the All Blacks as that was very much a weakened side, but they were beaten by the Boks before coming out on top of the Wallabies in their final match.
Wales have never beaten the Boks in South Africa.
South Africa: 15 Damian Willemse, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Francois de Klerk, 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Franco Mostert, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi (captain), 5 Lodewyk de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Retshegofaditswe Nché.
Replacements: 16 Malcolm Marx, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Vincent Koch, 19 Salmaan Moerat, 20 Elrigh Louw, 21 Albertus Smith, 22 Herschel Jantjies, 23 Willie le Roux
Wales: 15 Liam Williams, 14 Louis Rees-Zammit, 13 George North, 12 Nick Tompkins, 11 Josh Adams, 10 Dan Biggar (captain), 9 Kieran Hardy, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Tommy Reffell, 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Adam Beard, 4 Will Rowlands, 3 Dillon Lewis, 2 Ryan Elias, 1 Gareth Thomas.
Replacements: 16 Dewi Lake, 17 Rhys Carre, 18 Tomas Francis, 19 Alun Wyn Jones, 20 Josh Navidi, 21 Tomos Williams, 22 Gareth Anscombe, 23 Owen Watkin
BETTING – Click here to bet
South Africa 1/16
Handicap: South Africa -18.5
Suggested bet: Wales to score first and lose at 18/10
This is something of a speculative play, but for my money the handicap in this game looks well set. I can see Wales getting off to a strong start and was also considering them winning the race to 10 points at 4/1. For this bet to arrive I need Wales to be first on the score sheet, but the Boks to run out winners.
Look out for a host of other markets that will be available before kick-off including Total Points, Team Points, Match and Team Tries as well as First and Anytime Try Scorer Markets.
Note: All prices correct at the time of writing but are subject to change