Mon, Jun 25, 2:23pm by Staff Writer
World number two ranked Ireland emerged victorious from their three test series against Australia, defeating the Wallabies on Saturday night 20-16 in Sydney.
With no June international test window in 2019, all eyes will be on the World Cup in Japan.
The Irish are second favourites to win the tournament at $5.50, and showed they are capable of beating strong opposition away from home with a 2-1 victory against Australia.
The match produced a flurry of penalty goals, with the teams exchanging goals in the first half, until CJ Stander scored the games first try in the second stanza.
Marika Koroibete answered with a try ten minutes later to set up a grandstand finish, but the Wallabies were unable to break the Irish defensive resistance.
Wallabies coach Michael Cheika was disappointed with the way the match was officiating in the late stages, particularly critical of calls against the Wallabies at the ruck.
With Southern Hemisphere teams returning to club rugby in the Super Rugby competition this week, Australia’s next international hitouts will be in the Rugby Championship against New Zealand, South Africa and Argentina.
Australia are $9 to win the 2019 Rugby World Cup at Sportsbet, with England also priced in single figures at $7.
The Roses had an impressive 25-10 win against South Africa at Newlands to salvage a win from their tour of South Africa, despite losing the series 2-1.
The match produced only two tries, both in the second half.
Jesse Kriel put the Springboks ahead in the 45th minute, before a Jonny May try in the final 10 minutes sealed the result for England.
The win takes pressure off coach Eddie Jones, who hasn’t enjoyed a pleasant season coaching the English side. They faltered during the Six Nations and struggled in South Africa, after a promising 2017 season.
New Zealand completed a series sweep of France in Dunedin, crushing Les Bleus 49-14 and are $2.10 favourites to claim successive World Cups.
The perfect conditions under the roof at Forsyth Barr Stadium provided an exhibition of rugby, with nine tries in the match and no penalty goals for either team.
New Zealand led 21-14 at the break, but pushed ahead in the second half thanks to a Rieko Ioane hat trick.
Damien McKenzie was a perfect 9/9 with the boot to cap off a stellar season for the Kiwis.
Japan recovered from a disappointing loss to Italy last weekend to defeat Georgia 28-0 in Toyota.
The Cherry Blossoms are $151 to win the World Cup, but did claim the scalp of South Africa at the 2015 tournament, so are a dangerous team to meet in the group stage.
Argentina continued their nightmare June campaign, losing 44-15 to Scotland.
The Bravehearts bounced back from their shock loss to the United States last weekend, jumping out to a 28-3 lead in the first half.
It was another poor showing from Argentina, after their Super Rugby team the Jaguares has improved drastically this season. They are $34 to win the World Cup, with Scotland priced at $26 at Sportsbet.
In other fixtures it was a narrow 27-19 victory for Tonga against Fiji in Suva, whilst the United States defeated Canada 42-17 in Halifax.
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