This year’s Six Nations is once again set to contain all of the passion and intense rivalry associated with the northern hemisphere’s premier international tournament.
Wales are currently the 2/1 favourites to land a historic third straight Six Nations title with England and last year’s Wooden Spoon winners France a shade behind them in the betting at odds of 3/1.
Ireland are priced at 11/2 for championship glory, while perennial outsiders Scotland and Italy can snapped up at 50/1 and 250/1 respectively.
Warren Gatland’s Wales side have dominated their neighbours in recent tournaments and will enjoy three home games in this year’s competition, opening up against Italy in a match that should see the Red Dragons secure a routine victory at prohibitive odds of 1/25.
A likely success against the Italians would be the ideal way to build momentum with last year’s Grand Slam triumph their third since the Five Nations became Six in 2000. A repeat performance is priced at 6/1.
Meanwhile, England will be expected to make 2014’s championship a competitive affair ahead of next year’s World Cup on home soil, with captain Chris Robshaw’s side beginning their campaign in France.
Available at 6/4 to win at the Stade de France, a venue they secured maximum points from on their previous visit two years ago, an England victory away to their enigmatic Gallic rivals would be a real signal of intent.
A Calcutta Cup showdown with Scotland follows at Murrayfield, and while starting the competition with two road trips isn’t ideal, home matches against both Ireland and Wales could help Stuart Lancaster’s outfit land a first Triple Crown since 2003’s all-conquering side achieved the feat.
That’s an outcome priced at 9/4 although there are plenty of cases to be made for the other sides taking to the field over the next six weeks.
The unpredictable French can’t be written off, while Ireland’s ageing stars will also be keen to enjoy one last hurrah. Scotland and Italy managed two wins apiece last year and they’ll want to ensure they remain just as competitive.
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All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.
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