New Zealand favored for home win, but don't back them to cover the spread

Dean Etheridge
By , Updated on: Jun 12, 2023 12:00 AM
New Zealand vs South Africa 2023 Rugby Championship Betting

Round 2 of the 2023 Rugby Championship sees hosts New Zealand taking on South Africa in Auckland on Saturday. The match promises to be a classic, with the winner more than likely to win the 2023 Championship. Here we preview the fixture with our latest Rugby betting picks.

  • What; 2023 Rugby Championship - Round 2
  • Who; New Zealand vs South Africa
  • Where; Go Media Stadium Mt Smart, Auckland, New Zealand
  • When; Saturday, July 15th
  • Time; 3.05 am ET

This matchup between the two heavyweights of the Southern Hemisphere is effectively the match to decide the series. With the 2023 Rugby World Cup only a few weeks away, this year’s Rugby Championship has been truncated to three rounds instead of the usual six.

This means there are no second chances for either of the two betting favorites. The loser of this is effectively out of the competition.

Winning starts for the two favorites

Both the All Blacks and the Springboks won their opening matches with ease.

In the opening weekend’s fixtures, the All Blacks defeated the Argentina Pumas 41-12 in Mendoza. South Africa also made light work of their opponents, defeating Eddie Jones’ Australia side 43-12 in Pretoria.

Both teams won with a bonus point. But it’s the Springboks who top the table due to having a better points difference.

Betting to win the 2023 Rugby Championship

In the futures betting to win the 2023 Rugby Championship, the best rugby betting online sites have the All Blacks as the betting favorites to win. Ian Foster’s team are -200 to win their 20th Rugby Championship title.

Clearly the All Blacks having home advantage in the match against the Springboks is playing a part in these odds. The Springboks come next in the betting at +180, with Australia at +1200. Argentina is +8000.

Australia does have home advantage in Round 2 against Argentina, and then again in Round 3 against New Zealand. This does give the Aussies an outside chance. If Eddie Jones’ team can put in a much improved performance against Argentina on Saturday, and New Zealand defeat the Springboks, then a Round 3 win for Australia over New Zealand could potentially see the Wallabies crowned champions.

It would be a long shot. The Wallabies would probably need Argentina to do them a favor against South Africa for this to have a realistic chance of happening.

All Blacks the pick to win the Rugby Championship

New Zealand hasn’t won the Southern Hemisphere championship in a World Cup year since 2007. This could be down to playing more experimental sides during World Cup years, preferring to focus on the bigger prize.

This may again prove to be the case this year. All Black’s head coach Ian Foster has been under pressure, and it could be that he wants to win the Rugby Championship to get his critics off his back. But at the same time, he’s not likely to be replaced this close to a World Cup, so Foster may decide to experiment in this championship.

Either way, with home advantage in what is likely to be the deciding match, we have to go for the All Blacks to win the 2023 Rugby Championship.

New Zealand To win 2023 Rugby Championship
BetOnline
-200

New Zealand heavy favorites to beat South Africa

In the latest betting to win the match between the All Blacks and the Springboks, it’s New Zealand who are the heavy favorites at -350. To win on the money line, South Africa is +275.

Moving onto the handicap spread, the All Blacks are giving up 9.5 points. Both sides are -110 to win in this market.

Our Rugby betting table has more odds from the best sites for online rugby betting. You can read more about them on our sportsbook reviews page.

New Zealand vs South Africa; 2023 Rugby ChampionshipBetOnlineBetUSBovada
New Zealand-350-350-350
South Africa+275+275+275
New Zealand (-9.5)-110-110-110
South Africa (+9.5)-110-110-110

Our New Zealand vs South Africa Betting Pick

In the 2022 Rugby Championship, the two sides played twice in South Africa. In the opening encounter, the Springboks won 26-10, while in the second fixture, New Zealand won 35-23. To reduce travel, some Rugby Championship matches double up in one country and alternate for the following season. And in 2022, it was South Africa’s turn to have two home matches against their chief rival.

So this year, it’s New Zealand with the home match. But as we pointed out earlier, it is only one match in 2023, giving the fixture more of a knock-out feel, with both sides aware they can throw the kitchen sink at it.

Both teams will believe they can win this one. But from a purely betting perspective, money line odds of -350 on a New Zealand win look too short. We also feel that the South African side is more settled, meaning 9.5 points on the handicap seems generous to the visitors.

It’s always hard to back against New Zealand at home. We know they can beat any team by 15-20 points on a given day. But as Ireland proved in 2022, they are beatable on home turf. And that will add to the Springboks’ belief they can win.

A bet on South Africa on the money line does look better value, but we’re not sure they will win. So for our betting pick, we’re taking South Africa to win on the handicap spread.

South Africa +9.5 To beat New Zealand on the handicap spread
BetOnline
-110

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Meet the author

Dean Etheridge

Dean is primarily a fan of English football who regularly attends games, and combining his hobby with his job, he is now a full-time sports betting writer.  Rather than going down the educational route into sports journalism, Dean learned his trade by writing for hi...

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