New Zealand and South Africa to meet in last four at World Cup

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The boot of Morne Steyn could prove the ultimate difference as South Africa look to defy their underdog status to reach the Rugby World Cup semi finals at the expense of Australia.

Having won six of the last seven meetings between the pair, it is no surprise that Australia are the 4/5 favourites to beat South Africa again.

However, South Africa have largely had excuses for these most recent defeats and if they can get to grips with David Pocock then they will have a massive chance.

Steyn is a far more reliable kicking source than James O’Connor and this works in South Africa’s favour and could separate what is almost certain to be a tight encounter where territory and control will be vital.

South Africa are 6/5 to beat Australia 1/1 to triumph with a two-point handicap.

The other quarter final sees tournament favourites and hosts New Zealand host Argentina and they are a terribly short price to win despite the absence of three key players.

Dan Carter’s absence is a massive blow, while regular try-scorers Richard Kahui and Israel Dagg are also big doubts and may be rested ahead of what would be a far tougher semi final with either of their southern hemisphere rivals.

However, Richie McCaw is set to feature despite being troubled by a foot problem.

Argentina will be as organised as ever, but regardless of their determination in the scrum and at the breakdown, it is tough not to see the Kiwis winning with something in hand.

New Zealand are 1/1 to win conceding a 28-point handicap while it is 5/4 that they succeed by more than 31 points.

The one crumb of hope that Argentine can cling onto is that New Zealand do have a habit of capitulation at World Cups and they can be backed at 20/1 to cause a major surprise and reach the last four.

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Craig Kemp

Craig has written for Ladbrokes since the 2010 World Cup, having previously gained a Media & Sports Journalism degree and contributed to publications including the Racing Post. His main areas of interest are horse racing and UFC, but he is also an avid X Factor gambler and likes nothing more than indulging in a spot of Hip Hop Karaoke.