The Rugby Union World Cup is just around the corner, so many international teams will be starting their World Cup France preparations with a number of friendlies. Check out our best tips, predictions and special offers for selected matches.
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International Rugby Union
Ireland v England Betting Tips & Predictions (Saturday, 17:30 BST)
England coach Steve Borthwick has opted not to pick captain Owen Farrell in their friendly against Ireland on Saturday after an emotional week for the fly-half.
Farrell – who is the son of Ireland head coach Andy – was sent off against Wales last weekend for a shoulder-led on Taine Basham.
The red card has since been overturned allowing Farrell to play in the World Cup – he was available for this game – but the World Rugby governing body now want to appeal the decision and get the England star banned.
Borthwick has opted to take Farrell out of the firing line and will start with George Ford in the halves alongside Ben Youngs. Manu Tuilagi returns at centre with Anthony Watson coming in on the right wing.
Owen’s father has obviously backed his son and called the ‘circus’ surrounding his son as ‘absolutely disgusting.’
Farrell senior has opted to hand a first start to back-rower Cian Prendergast as Ireland look to prepare for the World Cup with an impressive performance and victory over the former World Cup winners.
Ireland are actually the third favourites to win the World Cup and I am backing them to get one over on England. If Farrell had been playing, I probably would have sided with the English – he is that influential.
Back Ireland to win by 11-15 points with Mack Hansen and Dan Sheehan both crossing for the Irish, while I am backing Watson to cross over England.