The 2018 Rugby Championship will be contested by Australia, Argentina, New Zealand and South Africa. The New Zealand All Blacks will be defending their title.
There are two matches this weekend and here we look at the two test matches coming up on Saturday.
Australia host New Zealand in Sydney while South Africa host Argentina in Durban.
Australia v New Zealand Rugby Championship Rd.1 Preview
Australia will host New Zealand in the Rugby Championship opening match this weekend and the teams meet in Sydney.
Australia will be looking for back to back wins over New Zealand as the last time these teams met Australia beat New Zealand 23-18 in Brisbane.
Australia have played New Zealand 161 times and they have won just 43 matches. There have been 11 draws between the sides and the average score when these teams meet is Australia 14 New Zealand 21.
This weekend the teams will meet at Stadium Australia, Sydney where they have played each other 17 times. In those 17 matches Australia have won 7, lost 9 and drawn one.
The average score when these teams meet at Stadium Australia, Sydney is : Australia 23 New Zealand 27.
This year Australia have played three Tests and won one. The other two were won by Ireland in Australia.
The New Zealand All Blacks have played three test matches and they have won all three. This will be their first match away from home.
The Bookies have given Australia a 12 point start for this Match – with an offer of up to $200 in Bonus bets. The All Blacks should be too powerful for the Wallabies in this opening match and they should win by 8 or more.
This Match will be shown on TV in NZ (Sky), Aus (Fox Sports), SA (SuperSport) and in the UK on Sky Sports.
Average score: Australia 14 New Zealand 21
Last five results
Sat, 21 Oct 2017 AUS v NZL 23-18 Suncorp Stadium, Brisbane
Sat, 26 Aug 2017 AUS v NZL 29-35 Otago Stadium, Dunedin
Sat, 19 Aug 2017 AUS v NZL 34-54 Stadium Australia, Sydney
Sat, 22 Oct 2016 AUS v NZL 10-37 Eden Park, Auckland
Sat, 27 Aug 2016 AUS v NZL 9-29 Westpac Trust, Wellington
Australia’s overall record against New Zealand
Played 161,Wins 43,Losses 111, Draws 7
Australia’s winning percentage = 26.7%
Match : Australia v New Zealand
Date : Sat 18 Aug 2018
Venue : ANZ Stadium, Sydney ,Australia
Kick Off local: 11.05
Referee: Jaco Peyper (SARU)
Assistant Ref 1: Wayne Barnes (RFU)
Assistant Ref 2: Luke Pearce (RFU)
TMO : Marius Jonker (SARU)
1. Tom Robertson 2. Tatafu Polota-Nau 3. Sekope Kepu 4. Izack Rodda 5. Adam Coleman 6. Lukhan Tui 7. Michael Hooper (c) 8. David Pocock 9. Will Genia 10. Bernard Foley 11. Marika Koroibete 12. Kurtley Beale 13. Reece Hodge 14. Dane Haylett-Petty 15. Israel Folau
Replacements : 16. Tolu Latu 17. Allan Alaalatoa 18. Taniela Tupou 19. Rob Simmons 20. Pete Samu 21. Nick Phipps 22. Matt Toomua 23. Jack Maddocks
15.Ben Smith 14.Waisake Naholo 13.Jack Goodhue 12.Ryan Crotty 11.Rieko Ioane 10.Beauden Barrett 9.Aaron Smith 8.Kieran Read (c) 7.Sam Cane 6.Liam Squire 5.Sam Whitelock 4.Brodie Retallick 3.Owen Franks 2.Codie Taylor 1.Joe Moody
Replacements 16. Nathan Harris 17. Karl Tu’inukuafe 18. Ofa Tuungafasi 19. Scott Barrett 20. Ardie Savea 21. TJ Perenara 22. Damian McKenzie 23. Anton Lienert-Brown
South Africa v Argentina Rugby Championship Rd.1 Preview
The second match in the Rugby Championship is in Durban South Africa where South Africa’s Springboks host Argentina’s Pumas.
The Springboks will be aiming for a third straight Test victory over Argentina as they won back to back matches in their last two meetings which were both in 2017.
Overall South Africa have played Argentina 26 times and they have won 23 matches, lost two and drawn one.
This weekend the teams will meet in Durban where the teams have only met once before. That match was won by Argentina 25-37 so the Boks will be hoping to get their first win over the Pumas in Durban this weekend.
The average score when these teams meet is : South Africa 36 Argentina 20. When they play on South African soil the average is : South Africa 39 Argentina 19.
This year South Africa have played three Test matches. All of them were at home for the Springboks and they won two and lost one.
Argentina have also played three Test matches – again all at home – and they lost all three. This will be their first away match for 2018 and their first under Mario Ledesma who was Jaguares Super rugby head coach.
Average score: South Africa 36 Argentina 20
Last five results
Sat, 26 Aug 2017 SAF v ARG 41-23 Salta
Sat, 19 Aug 2017 SAF v ARG 37-15 Mandela Bay, Pt Elizabeth
Sat, 27 Aug 2016 SAF v ARG 24-26 Salta
Sat, 20 Aug 2016 SAF v ARG 30-23 Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
Fri, 30 Oct 2015 (RWC 3&4 SAF) v ARG 24-13 Olympic Stadium, London
South Africa’s overall record against Argentina
Played 26. Wins 23, Losses 2 , Draws 1
South Africa’s winning percentage = 88.5%
Match : South Africa v Argentina
Date : Sat 18 Aug 2018
Venue : Kings Park, Durban, South Africa
Kick Off local: 16.05
Referee: Ben O’Keeffe (NZRU)
Assistant Ref 1: Angus Gardner (ARU)
Assistant Ref 2: Andrew Brace (IRFU)
TMO : Simon McDowell
15 Willie le Roux, 14 Makazole Mapimpi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Andre Esterhuizen, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Handre Pollard, 9 Faf de Klerk, 8 Warren Whiteley, 7 Siya Kolisi (captain), 6 Francois Louw, 5 Pieter-Steph du Toit, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Tendai Mtawarira
Replacements: 16 Bongi Mbonambi, 17 Steven Kitshoff, 18 Thomas du Toit, 19 Marvin Orie, 20 Marco van Staden, 21 Embrose Papier, 22 Lionel Mapoe, 23 Damian Willemse
15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Bautista Delguy, 13 Matias Moroni, 12 Bautista Ezcurra, 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Nicolas Sanchez, 9 Gonzalo Bertranou, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Marcos Kremer, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Matias Alemanno, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Juan Figallo, 2 Agustin Creevy (captain), 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro
Replacements: 16 Diego Fortuny, 17 Santiago Garcia Botta, 18 Santiago Medrano, 19 Tomas Lavanini, 20 Tomas Lezana, 21 Martin Landajo, 22 Santiago Gonzalez Iglesias, 23 Juan Cruz Mallia