World Cup 2019 is Eleven Months Away
I remember having a debate over World Cup Outright prices with a few mates at a pub around March 2016. The main focus of this heated discussion would be what a good price on a New Zealand tournament win would be. My opinion was that New Zealand at anything over even money would be absolute gold dust.
At this point in time, the All Blacks were unrivalled. Yes,England had just launched that memorable run of wins but they looked more like flat track bullies than serious world number 1 contenders. So it proved, as the English machine lost momentum when their big guns started to drop off with injuries. A lack of loose forward depth and no plan B has seen England drop down the rankings and out of punters World Cup picks.
While England have been in freefall the Irish have emerged as real contenders, with head coach Joe Schmidt building great squad depth while seeing his side conquer ll and sundry.
Last weekend saw the Irish beat the All Blacks for the second time in 24-months. This is no fluke. The Irish are a real threat to the All Blacks World Cup crown. The All Blacks should also be worried about their dominance of world rugby as it may be coming to a close with the Irish building something of a dynasty.
The All Blacks at even money or slightly more to retain the William Webb Ellis Trophy doesn’t seem as solid a bet as it did 12 months ago. And that five-hour long pub debate doesn’t seem worth missing a dinner with the ex’s parents that got me a week of admin.
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