Take Argentina to cover the Handicap against Australia in final round of Rugby Championship
October 05, 2016
Recommended bet: Argentina +7.5 handicap @ 9/10 (1.90) with Unibet
Argentina meet Australia in the sixth and final round of the Rugby Championship, with Argentina having conceded home advantage to make this the first match to be played outside one of the four competing nations.
As a result, although this is officially a home fixture for Argentina, it’s the Wallabies who should feel right at home, with this being their seventh international Test match played at Twickenham in less than two years.
One of those previous six matches at Twickenham was the World Cup semi-final between these two teams a year ago, when Australia ran out 29-15 winners.
Australia were also victorious the last time these two teams met. That was in the reverse Rugby Championship fixture in the 4th round played in Perth, in which the Wallabies ran out comfortable 36-20 winnerrs, helped by racing into an early 21-0 lead that effectively put the game beyond the Pumas.
Argentina went down 36-17 to New Zealand in Buenos Aires last weekend. After holding out for nearly 30-minutes, the Pumas then saw the All Blacks go over for five tries in barely 15-minutes either side of the interval. Argentina went on to score two themselves that made the margin of victory a little less emphatic.
Australia lost 18-10 in South Africa last week, despite scoring the only try of the match and having dominated territorially for large parts of the game.
There will be at least one change in the Australia team at Twickenham. Sean McMahon, who switched from his usual flanker role to play at number eight at Loftus Versfeld in place of the injured David Pocock in Saturday’s defeat, is himself ruled out of the Pumas game with an ankle injury.
Potential replacements for McMahon at number eight are Lopeti Timani and New Zealand-born Leroy Houston. The latter was not in the original Australian squad, but is playing in England for Bath on loan from the Queensland Reds.
The head-to-head record clearly favours Australia, but these games are usually competitive and reasonably close. With Australia not in the greatest shape at present, backing the Pumas +7.5 points on the Handicap looks a reasonable call.