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England – Wales

England Wales 2018 Six Nations prediction

England and Wales will square off in a highly anticipated Six Nations Round 2 clash, with both teams coming after big wins in the opening round.

England won 46-15 in Italy last week without even forcing the issue too much, seemingly pushing the pedal only in the last 20 minutes when they eventually ran away with the game. The Three Lions are reigning two time Six Nations champions, they are in excellent form (losing just one match since Eddie Jones took over after the 2015 RWC), and will fancy their chances to lift the trophy for the third time in a row.

Wales wasn`t very highly rated coming into this tournament, as they were playing unimpressive rugby and were seemingly on a downtrend in the previous 2 years. However, the Welsh pulled a great performance out of the bag and managed to demolish an excellent Scottish team last week, winning 34-7 in Cardiff. While the result was definitely harsh, it was still a massive win and a remarkable display of effectiveness and ruthlessness by the Welsh.

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Team news & lineups:

England will make just two changes to the lineup that won in Italy, and will continue to miss a few big time players like Billy Vunipola or Ben Youngs. Wales will field the same lineup that beat Scotland. They have more injury problems than England, as key guys like Davies, Biggar, Lydiate, Faletay, Web or Warburton will continue to miss out.

England: 15 Mike Brown, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Jonny May, 10 George Ford, 9 Danny Care, 8 Sam Simmonds, 7 Chris Robshaw, 6 Courtney Lawes, 5 Maro Itoje, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Dylan Hartley, 1 Mako Vunipola

Wales: 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Josh Adams, 13 Scott Williams, 12 Hadleigh Parkes, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Rhys Patchell, 9 Gareth Davies, 8 Ross Moriarty, 7 Josh Navidi, 6 Aaron Shingler, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (c), 4 Cory Hill, 3 Samson Lee, 2 Ken Owens, 1 Rob Evans

Credit to Wales for the massive win against the Scots last week, but you have to feel the Scots were hard done by that scoreline, as they were the better team in the first 20 minutes or so and the match was overall much closer than the 24 point difference suggests. Possession and territory were pretty much equal.

That is not meant to take anything away from Wales, but fact is they need to prove they can play that type of game consistently, and on the road as well. As of right now, it could have well been just a fluke, and there is not much to suggest Wales can repeat that level of performance away from home. They are always so much better at home, and playing at Twickenham will be a massive challenge.

Wales also will have to deal with key players missing out. While that did not hurt them against Scotland, fact is that the Scots had a plethora of injuries of their own, so that balanced things out. It will be more difficult for Wales to compete without so many influential players against England, away from home. The hosts also miss some key guys, but not as many, and their depth is fantastic.

You have to feel that England has all the advantages and circumstances it needs to get a solid win here. They are a better, more consistent team, they are at home, and they had an easy game last week, so they could be more fresh than their opponents (who will also field an unchanged lineup). Not to mention Wales’ injuries.

I believe Wales is a bit overrated here after the result against Scotland, and they should find it very difficult to put on a second consecutive big performance, this time away from home.

Look for a good game in which England is likely to apply more pressure, forcing more errors from the Welsh, and winning more penalties (particularly in the probable wet weather conditions). They should be able to score with more consistency and maybe add a couple of tries in the last 10 minutes or so due to their superior bench and due to potentially being more rested.

As per my analysis, my tip will be England to cover the 11.5 point handicap, just like it happened the last time these two met at Twickenham (2016, England won 27-13). I will invest 9 units on this bet. Prediction: England – Wales 28 – 11.

Pick: England -11,5
Odds: 1.94 @ 1xBet
Stake: 9
Possible profit: 8.46
Event date: 10 February

About Rostick

Former bookie & water polo player. Rugby Union expert. - EDITOR INFO & STATS
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