Japan v New Zealand
462 v 34 in 5
462 v 34 that is the sum of the two team’s points scored in five previous meetings between these two nations. An average of 85.6pts in favour of the All Blacks. Interestingly the Japanese have scored a best of 17pts v New Zealand, it also happened to be my father’s 50th birthday. I remember the day very well, the All Blacks scored a record 145pts incl. 21 tries. This game was in 1995 during the World Cup in SA.
Japan last played New Zealand five years ago, losing by 48pts. This is most certainly a different Japanese team. They have come a long way and although they will be beaten, or should I say most probably will be. New Zealand should win, in fact they should win comfortably. The media has suggested that a ‘weaker’ or second string side will be turning out in Tokyo. We all know that there is no such thing.
All Blacks to Get a Second Look at Local Conditions
Japan played last week and beat a plus by some distance, they nearly won the game. They played a World XV, this week it’s the world champs. New Zealand will be looking to lock in some more local conditions before heading East. Japan will be looking to test themselves against the best.
After this game Japan take a week off, then face the English fresh from a Bok attack and an All Black onslaught. They then play Russia and head home. Two big games in three weeks, then an easier game in Gloucester. I will be looking forward to the Russian game, I reckon the Japs will beat them comfortably.
New Zealand on the other hand have a date with England next week, followed by the much anticipated Irish clash and an unlikely challenge in Italy.
This End of Year Tours looks a cracker, and it really starts this week. This game will be played at one of the venues of the World Cup next year, a 50,000 seater.
This week I expected the Bookies to mess this one up, I expected a handicap around the forty five line. At +45 I would have climbed into the Japanese. Considering the handicap has been priced up at a more conservative 35 I will have a smaller less confident play, I am going to go with the home team.
Kick off is scheduled for 07h45 GMT +2 on Saturday in Tokyo. The referee for this game will be Matthew Carly (ENG), Click here for the Weather in Tokyo and if you want to follow the game on Twitter click here for the Hashtag #JPNvNZL
Call: Japan +35.5 at evens for 1 unit
Click on any of the Links below to view more content and previews on Oracle Rugby