The 2022 Rugby Championship heads into its sixth and final round of matches, and here we have the latest permutations on where all four teams stand, and what they need to do to win the championship. And as well as all that, we also have our free Rugby betting picks on this weekend’s matches.
It’s fair to say this year’s championship has been a topsy-turvy affair. Argentina topped the table at the end of Week 2 and Week 3, and heading into the final round of matches the Pumas still have a chance to not finish bottom of the table and record wins over all three opponents.
Regardless of what happens this Saturday in Durban, it’s been a successful championship for the Pumas. So far they have recorded their record win over Australia, and have also beaten the All Blacks for the first time in their history in New Zealand.
I’m pretty sure that at the start of the competition, Argentina coach Michael Chieka would have settled for one or the other of those outcomes!
What happened in Week 5 of the Rugby Championship?
Well, putting aside all the controversies of the Bledisloe Cup match in Melbourne last Thursday, the real news is that New Zealand beat Australia 39-37, and South Africa defeated Argentina 36-20.
Property of the @AllBlacks for a 20th year in a row 🏆
The Bledisloe Cup is on its way back to New Zealand after a late 39-37 win over Australia 🇳🇿 pic.twitter.com/TF6l0Cbedg
— World Rugby (@WorldRugby) September 15, 2022
Basically, Week 5 was normal service continuing from Week 4 (after three weeks of shocks). Normal service is New Zealand winning with a last gasp try against the Wallabies, and it’s also South Africa grinding down the Pumas to run out comfortable winners.
— World Rugby (@WorldRugby) September 17, 2022
The top two nations in the competition did what they do best, and they are now neck and neck to win the championship.
2022 Rugby Championship; Where we stand heading into Week 6
South Africa joined New Zealand on 14 points at the top of the table. The Springboks 36-20 win over Argentina gave them the win along with a try scoring bonus point. New Zealand’s close 39-37 win over saw the Aussies pick up a losing bonus point, meaning New Zealand received none, and just got the standard four points awarded for a win.
This ties the table with New Zealand and South Africa on 14 points. If both teams match each other next week (win with a bonus point, for example), then the table is decided on points difference.
At the moment New Zealand are on +41, South Africa is +28. So the All Blacks have a 13 points advantage. Crucially, the Springboks start after the New Zealand v Australia match has finished, so they will know exactly what they need to do to win the championship for the first time since the shortened version in 2019.
All four sides can still win the Championship, but only two have a realistic chance
In theory, all four sides could still win the championship, But for Argentina, it would take a mathematical genius to work out the permutations. But to put it in plain English, the Pumas would need to hammer South Africa with a bonus point, and then hope that Australia beat New Zealand, with both sides not gaining a bonus point.
But the points difference that Argentina would need to win by would be astronomical. The sort you find in one sided matches in the opening stage of a world cup when New Zealand take on a qualifier like Portugal. These sort of results just don’t occur in the Rugby Championship.
As for Australia, they would need to beat New Zealand with a bonus point, and hope that South Africa lose without a bonus point. The Aussies could win the title with South Africa gaining a losing bonus point, but that would mean the Wallabies need to beat the All Blacks by over 50 points.
Basically, the title is a two horse race between New Zealand and South Africa.
Unfortunately - probably due to the advantage South Africa holds with the later start time - the best rugby betting sites online haven’t got any live markets available for who will win the championship outright. IF and when they do go live, I’ve picked New Zealand all competition, and I’m not changing that view now.
Now, time for some rugby picks on the actual matches.
|Rugby Championship Week 6 Betting|
|New Zealand (-15.5)||-115||-115||Australia (+15.5)|
|South Africa (-17.5)||-115||-115||Argentina (+17.5)|
New Zealand v Australia
The Aussies will be smarting after what happened last week. Whatever I think is irrelevant (it was harsh and unusual, but more referees need to do this), as the gold and green think they were robbed.
- What; New Zealand v Australia - 2022 Rugby Championship
- Where; Eden Park, Auckland, New Zealand
- When; Saturday, September 24th, 2022
- Time; 3.05 am ET
I don’t see that being enough to inspire Dave Rennie’s team to a win at Eden Park. New Zealand know they need a big bonus point win to put the pressure on South Africa, and I can see them getting it. The handicap is at 15.5 with BetOnline, and I can see New Zealand beating that. Therefore my rugby betting pick is for New Zealand -15.5 to win.
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South Africa v Argentina
South Africa will know what they need to do before they kick off. The Springboks will obviously hope that they get a huge favor from Australia, but we are going to assume that is not going to happen.
- What; South Africa v Argentina - 2022 Rugby Championship
- Where; Kings Park Stadium, Durban, South Africa
- When; Saturday, September 24th, 2022
- Time;11.05 am ET
The handicap spread for this match is set at 17.5 in favor of the Pumas. The Rugby betting odds on both sides of the spread is -115. So assuming New Zealand win by 15 points (and beat the handicap) with a bonus point, South Africa are probably going to need to win by about 30 points, and with a bonus point to win the championship.
I can’t see them doing that. But I can see South Africa beating the handicap spread and winning by more than 17.5 points.