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Rugby Union | Friday, February 4, 2022 1:14 PM (Revised at: Tuesday, February 15, 2022 10:10 AM)

Ireland vs Wales Best Bets: Six Nations Rugby Saturday February 5th

Ireland vs Wales Best Bets: Six Nations Rugby Saturday February 5th
REUTERS / Alamy Stock Photo

Six Nations Rugby begins this weekend. Looking toward the opening match between Ireland and Wales, bettingexpert Super Tipster TheBettingStig delivers his best bets for the game.

In this article:

  • Ireland vs Wales Six Nations match preview
  • Ireland vs Wales Six Nations best bets

The first Six Nations game of 2022 kicks of here on Saturday the 5th of February at 2:15pm (UK time) at the Aviva Stadium. Ireland will host Wales in what should be a cracker of a match to get the tournament started.

The referee is South African Jaco Peyper, an excellent referee who is not afraid to be strict on indiscretions but also allows advantage to let games flow. He communicates well with the players so refereeing controversy here is unlikely.

The weather is expected to be cloudy and breezy with 40kmph wind and about a 70% chance of rain so we can expect light rain for parts of the match. The undulating roof of the Aviva Stadium offers some protection against the wind but we can expect plenty of high bombs as kickers try and find the swirling wind to make life difficult for those fielding the kicks.

The back three of Wales in Rees-Zammit, McNicholl and Williams are all very attacking players and if kicks are just slightly long to give these guys space it could play into their hands in terms of counter attacking opportunities.

The back three of Ireland in Hansen, Conway and Keenan looks solid but they are perhaps not quite as attacking as the Welsh, who will look to put particular pressure on Mack Hansen who will be making his Test debut for Ireland in the no. 11 jersey.

Welsh coach Wayne Pivac will know all too well that the Aviva is a particularly tough place to try and upset the Irish, as the Welsh have managed just one win from their last seven visits here. To add to the challenge, the team has been hard hit with injuries to stars like regular captain Allun Wyn Jones, Ken Owens, George North and Josh Navidi. They will need to be extremely clinical and watch their discipline as any indiscretions should be promptly taken advantage of by Johnny Sexton’s accurate boot. On the flipside though Dan Biggar is just as capable of slotting the 3’s and this should be an exiting head-to-head to keep an eye on.

Ireland vs Wales Six Nations Best Bet

Wales: +6.5 points halftime

The books have priced up Ireland as 14.5 point favourites, and with a potent looking back three in Doris, Van der Flier and Conan it’s hard to argue with that line.

Wales may have beaten an understrength Australian outfit in the November series but this will be a challenge of a different kind and in the end Ireland who are on a 7 match winning streak should simply have too much possession not to come away with a convincing victory.

Interestingly though, in swirling wind with some rain around and Test match pressure with some first match gelling jitters, it’s easy to envision a first half with plenty of arm wrestle going on and perhaps just a few penalties traded on either side as Sexton and Biggar each look to build an innings for their respective sides.

For this reason, my favourite play of this match is Wales half time +6.5 which you can currently get at a price of around 1.85.

Other plays that caught my eye are Wales over 12.5 match points as I expect at least 2 penalties in the first and at least one converted try in the second, which you can get at 1.90.

Since I am convinced that Ireland’s muscle will have them run away with the match in the second half, the obvious bet here that offers value is Ireland -6.5 second half handicap which currently trades at about 1.75.

  • Best Bet: Wales half time +6.5 @ 1.85 (10/10 stakes)

Also consider…

  • Wales over 12.5 match points @ 1.90 (10/10 stakes)
  • Ireland -6.5 second half handicap @ 1.75 (10/10 stakes)

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