Can England become the first team since 2017 to successfully defend the Six Nations?
Eddie Jones’ side have work to do, with France the current favourites after a confident start to this year’s competition. However, the holders have a chance to close the gap this weekend if they can grind out a win against Wales.
Here’s our look at the latest Six Nations outright betting…
SIX NATIONS BETTING | CAN ENGLAND WIN AGAIN?
England are 61/25 with Marathonbet to make it back-to-back triumphs, with France the current favourites to win the competition at 4/5…. 🏉
Six Nations Tips | Round 3 Betting
ITALY VS IRELAND
Andy Farrell is a man under pressure as Ireland head coach with his side currently threatening Italy for this year’s wooden spoon after back-to-back defeats.
Thankfully, he should get the morale boost he needs this weekend over the traditional recipients of that prize. Despite the odd glimpse of promise against England, the Italians still lack the all-round game to do anything but fleetingly trouble the other five in this competition.
The Italians did leave Twickenham with more points than they’ve managed in that match-up since 2008, but history suggests they will have little joy this Saturday. They’ve only managed to pull off an upset against the Irish once since joining this competition, a 22-15 win in 2013.
A lack of experience in his spine left Farrell’s best-laid plans exposed to moments of individual brilliance from a wily French outfit last time out. However, the Ireland head coach will be boosted by the expected return of experienced quartet James Ryan, Conor Murray, Johnny Sexton and David Kilcoyne in Rome.
WALES VS ENGLAND
Do Wales have staying power at the top of the Six Nations table?
We’ll find out soon enough.
Wayne Pivac’s side have made it two from two in this year’s tournament by strictly adhering to that old sporting adage: you can only beat what’s in front of you.
For the Welsh, that’s been capitalising on strokes of good fortune in both of their wins to date. The Welsh pressed home their advantage as both Ireland and Scotland were reduced to 14 men for an extended period in those contests. That said, even though those wins were hardly by convincing margins given the circumstances, they have provided Pivac workable foundations to plot a path to Six Nations glory in 2021.
There’s a fascinating battle in prospect here as Gloucester colleagues Louis Rees-Zammit and Jonny May line up on either side.
Eddie Jones will be hoping it’s the more experienced May who helps tip the balance in this contest, while Owen Farrell will be hoping to recapture some form, with the England captain surprisingly off his game to date.
England edged an entertaining encounter 33-20 last March to seal the Triple Crown.
FRANCE VS SCOTLAND
Preparations for this game have been thrown into chaos with the news that up to 11 French players – including captain Charles Ollivon – have tested positive for coronavirus.
Six Nations organisers have now wisely opted to delay this clash, with a new date yet to be agreed. However, the disruption in the French camp has come up at the worst possible moment for Fabien Galthie’s side, with the coach also side-lined by a positive test.
Up to this point, Les Bleus have looked worthy favourites for a first Six Nations win after thrashing Italy and edging the fine margins in a 15-13 victory in Ireland.
Whatever the make-up of the French side that finally takes to the field in the rescheduled clash, Scotland can enter this game with every confidence of pulling off a result.
After going almost a decade without a win over the French, the Scots have actually had the upper hand in Six Nations meetings between the sides since 2016, winning three of the last five, albeit all at Murrayfield.
This looks their best chance in a while of a breakthrough win in Paris, regardless of when this fixture takes place.
This match has now been postponed; rescheduled date TBC
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