Brett the hitman to break hearts in Rugby World Cup

World Cup

Rugby League
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Published: 27/10/2013

The 2013 Rugby League World Cup gets underway on Saturday afternoon (14:30, BBC1) when Australia and England do battle at the Millennium Stadium in Cardiff.

Bookmakers think Australia can not be stopped with the Kangaroos the 2/5 (SPREADEX) favourites for the tournament. It is easy to see why as Australia have by far the best talent on show in the event including Brett Morris who is our selection to be the star of the tournament. Morris grabbed 14 tries this season for St George Illawara and was named the player of the year for his club and can cap an excellent season by running out top tournament tryscorer here at odds of 10/1 (SKYBET/CORAL/william hill). The Dragons wide man will be handed the wing spot for Australia and can see off his international teammates Darius Boyd and Billy Slater. Do note that SKYBET and william hill are paying a third the odds and CORAL are quarter so keep this in mind when selecting which bookmaker to use.

Outside Australia only two teams have realistic shots at winning this, the defending champions New Zealand and the joint hosts England. New Zealand are 17/4 (SPREADEX) for the repeat success while England can be backed at 8/1 (SKYBET/BWIN/betway). It is likely down to come to these two sides meeting in the semi-final for a place in the final. I think New Zealand are the better of two though at these prices England have to be worth an interest at 6/4 (unibet) to make the final. The hosts, despite a recent loss to France, have a talented squad and they have competed in six of the last nine finals.

The remaining 11 sides will just have hopes of making the semi-finals and it is 22/1 (ladbrokes) that anyone outside the big three makes the final. It is a shame then that bookmakers are not priced up on a to make the semi-final market.

In terms of pool betting Group A will come down to the opening day clash between Australia and England with the Kanagaroos the 2/9 (GENERAL) favourites to win ahead of England at 4/1 (bet365/STAN JAMES). Fiji and Ireland will be battling out for the third slot as the top three from Groups A and B will occupy six of the eight quarter-final slots.

In Group B it is New Zealand who are expected to dominate at 1/13 (SPREADEX) while Samoa, France and Papau New Guinea will battle to fill the quarter-final slots.

In Group C it might be worth chancing that Italy can come on top of their group ahead of Tonga who are the short priced 2/5 (unibet) favourites. The Italians came out on top in a recent friendly with England and have some talented players and are capable of beating the Tongans in a one-off game so take the 17/4 (SPREADEX).

In Group D it will come down to the Cook Islands and Wales and the former are the evens (CORAL) favourites ahead of the latter at 6/5 (GENERAL) while the USA are 14/1 (CORAL/SPREADEX) outsiders and a side who could be value on the handicaps in individual group matches.

BEST OF THE BETS

GOLD: Brett Morris EW,top tournament tryscorer, 10/1 (SKYBET/CORAL/WILIAM HILL)
SILVER: Italy to win Pool C, 17/4 (SPREADEX)
BRONZE: England to make the World Cup final, 6/4 (unibet)


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