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South Africa – Italy



South Africa Italy rugby world cup betting preview

South Africa and Italy will square off on Friday in the RWC 2019, with the match likely to decide the second place in Pool B. Of course, that is likely to be South Africa.

The Springboks haven`t shown us anything we didn`t already know in the first two matches. After a very good year in which they also won the shortened edition of the Rugby Championship, the South Africans started off with a relatively competitive 13-23 loss against New Zealand. The Boks could have maybe played better, but it was by no means a poor performance. Next, South Africa followed with a routine 57-3 victory over Namibia last Saturday, a match in which the Boks rested most of their main guys.

Italy got what it wanted from the first two matches against Namibia (won by 25) and Canada (won by 41). The two bonus point wins assured Italy of qualification for the next World Cup, and now the Italians can play the last two matches without pressure – hoping that maybe, just maybe, they can spring a monumental upset against either South Africa or New Zealand.

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Team news & lineups:

Both teams will field strong lineups here, having rested their main guys in the previous round against Canada and Namibia respectively.

South Africa: 15 Willie le Roux, 14 Cheslin Kolbe, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Damian de Allende, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 6 Siya Kolisi (c), 5 Lood de Jager, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Tendai Mtawarira

Italy: 15 Matteo Minozzi, 14 Tommaso Benvenuti, 13 Luca Morisi, 12 Jayden Hayward, 11 Michele Campagnaro, 10 Tommaso Allan, 9 Tito Tebaldi, 8 Sergio Parisse (c), 7 Jake Polledri, 6 Braam Steyn, 5 Dean Budd, 4 David Sisi, 3 Simone Ferrari, 2 Luca Bigi, 1 Andrea Lovotti

The two teams met twice since the 2015 World Cup. Italy claimed a shock 20-18 victory back in 2016, but South Africa avenged that with a 35-6 win next year in 2017.

Italy looked pretty sharp so far in the Rugby World Cup. Even though they were unfocused and made a lot of mistakes in the opener against Namibia, they still played very well in that game except for the last pass and finishing, when the errors came. They were much more focused against Canada and put on a clinic in a 48-7 win.

The Italian offense has been great and they will fancy their chances to score one or two tries even against an opponent of South Africa’s caliber. Their defense showed some holes though, so that will need to be improved if the Italians want to stay close.

Italy`s problem has always been the inability to compete with the top teams. They have not won a Six Nations game since 2015, sometimes being handed some heavy losses, but other times staying competitive. Aside for that previously mentioned win against South Africa they haven`t really beaten Tier 1 Nations in quite a while.

However, The Azzuri look good value to keep this game interesting. South Africa is playing well but hasn`t hit its top form yet, and they`ll probably switch to their top gear only from the quarterfinals onwards.

As far as the weather is concerned, it will be overcast with high possibility of rain. A wet game could get more messy and fragmented, which normally should help the weaker team.

Italy are no mugs, and have a good chance to cover the +26,5 point spread. Prediction: Italy – South Africa 17 – 36.

Pick: Italy +26,5
Odds: 1.90 @ 18Bet
Stake: 8
Possible profit: 7.20
Event date: 4 October

About Rostick

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