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Ireland vs Tonga 16/09/2023, Rugby World Cup – Betting Tips

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Ireland vs Tonga, Saturday 16th September 20:00

Ireland are seeking to extend their record winning streak to 15 matches as they attempt to avoid a giant killing by Tonga on Saturday evening.

They thrashed minnows Romania 82-8 last weekend and need to keep themselves on course for the quarter-finals moving towards pivotal Paris appointments with the Springboks and Scotland.

Tonga – ranked 15th in the world – are preparing for their opening match in France after the tournament schedule handed them a fixture-free opening weekend.

Tonga will be hoping to lift their game at the Rugby World Cup as they find themselves falling away from their regional rivals.

But they really are a long shot against one of the best sides in the world.

However, if Tonga can start really fast and find a way to keep Ireland on the back foot, they might be able to edge the first half.

Ireland certainly have the potential to put 40 or more points on Tonga and could really stack the points up after putting up huge numbers against Romania.

Ireland could look to use their maul to wear Tonga down early on and he will be a good bet for the first try.

Johnny Sexton will captain a strong team at Stade de La Beaujoire, just seven days before Andy Farrell’s men take on defending champions South Africa.

Scrum-half Conor Murray, hooker Ronan Kelleher and flanker Josh van der Flier are also recalled following last weekend’s 82-8 thrashing of Romania.

Hooker Dan Sheehan has returned to training following the foot issue he sustained in last month’s warm-up win over England but remains an absentee.

As Romania showed in the earlier Pool B fixture, any side is vulnerable to an early strike, and Tonga certainly have a few x-factor players who could make magic early on.

Tonga to score the first try will get you good value from most bookies.

The first half could be where the match is won and lost, and we expect that there will be more points score in the first 40 than the second.

Predictions:

Tonga to win first half

Ireland to win by 41-45 points

Ross Byrne to score most points


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