The bookmakers offering the best rugby union odds

Though rugby is one of the oldest active sports in the world today, the game only turned professional in 1995 and in many ways feels rejuvenated and a little bit undiscovered.

The move to professionalism was a long time coming. Though amateurism seemed like a good idea, in principle it just didn’t work, and as a result, the game started to seriously lag behind not just other sports like football, but its other code in rugby league.

Professionalism gave rugby union a chance to restart and reinvent itself,  and now nearly 20 years on since the turn to pro, rugby union players no longer switch to rugby league, instead they switch from league to union.

Tactics and player ability has also improved tenfold, while the game has also become infinitely more accessible to teams around the world, most notably in Japan who never won a game vs a Tier 1 side before 1995, and have won six games since. Fiji only won three games vs Tier 1 sides before 1995 and eight since. Tonga, one before ’95 and five since. Samoa, three before ’95, twelve since.

It’s only really Romania and Italy who have gone backwards since 1995 with Romania in particular who have really suffered. Throughout the 70’s and early 80’s especially, Romania were on a par with France and better than Italy, but now Romania lag behind both, and now Georgia too, a team still searching for their first victory over a tier one side.

But despite the emergence of the smaller nations outside the top 10, the status quo still remains unaffected with the likes of England, Australia, Wales, France, Argentina, Scotland, South Africa, Ireland and New Zealand fluctuating up throughout the top 10.

New Zealand are still the side to beat as ever, but after Ireland’s two victories in their last three against the All Blacks, they will be feeling mightily confident that they can at least beat their previous best result of a quarter-final finish in the 2019 Rugby World Cup, and maybe even win the lot.

And where you can you bet on this potential outcome along with Six Nations action, Rugby Champions Cup, The Rugby Championship, Rugby Challenge Cup, Gallagher Premiership, Pro 14, Super Rugby, and more?

Well at any of the bookmakers featured in the table below, of course!

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