Australia overwhelming favourites to win Rugby League World Cup

Drew Darbyshire
Mal Meninga Australia Rugby League World Cup PA

Photo: David Neilson/SWpix/PhotosportNZ

Rugby League World Cup holders Australia are heavy favourites to retain their crown at this year’s tournament in England.

Mal Meninga’s go into this year’s World Cup as overwhelming favourites, having won the last two World Cups in 2013 and 2017.

The Kangaroos have won the World Cup more times than anyone else, with 11 titles to their name. Great Britain have won it three times, whilst New Zealand have won it once.

Australia are priced at just 1/3 with Betfred to win this year’s tournament.

New Zealand, who won the World Cup in 2008, are second favourites and rugby league tips & strategies for Kiwis might consider 11/2 as a good outsider price to back.

Shaun Wane will take charge of England in his first World Cup as head coach, with the tournament hosts being 6/1 to get their hands on the trophy.

Tonga, who are coached by St Helens boss Kristian Woolf, are priced at 12/1. They have enjoyed a meteoric rise on the international scene since the likes of Jason Taumalolo, David Fifita and Daniel Tupou pledged their allegiance to the Pacific island.

Underdogs Samoa

There’s been a lot of hype around Samoa going into this year’s tournament, with many tipping them to follow in the footsteps of Tonga and become the next powerhouse in international rugby league. The likes of Jarome Luai and Brian To’o have already committed to their heritage nation for the tournament. Quite surprisingly, Samoa are outsiders at 22/1.

Fiji, who have reached the semi-finals of the last three World Cups, are priced at 40/1 to win their first-ever World Cup.

And at 100/1 is Papua New Guinea, who beat Fiji in a mid-season test earlier this year.

Four nations are priced at 200/1 – Wales, Italy, Cook Islands and France. Scotland, Lebanon and Ireland are all 250/1.

And if you fancy a long shot, then look no further than World Cup debutants Jamaica and Greece, who are both massive underdogs at 500/1.

Rugby League World Cup odds in full:

  • Australia 1/3
  • New Zealand 11/2
  • England 6/1
  • Tonga 12/1
  • Samoa 22/1
  • Fiji 40/1
  • Papua New Guinea 100/1
  • Wales 200/1
  • Italy 200/1
  • Cook Islands 200/1
  • France 200/1
  • Scotland 250/1
  • Lebanon 250/1
  • Ireland 250/1
  • Jamaica 500/1
  • Greece 500/1

The Rugby League World Cup when England take on Samoa at St James’ Park in Newcastle on October 15. Australia also take on Fiji at Headingley on the opening day.

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