The November Autumn Internationals Round 2 Preview – Not Just the Big Boys!

The November Autumn Internationals Round 2 features something for everyone with ten matches including heavyweights like France hosting the All Blacks in a repeat of the Rugby World Cup 2011 final, while other top teams like Wales host South Africa and England host the Pumas.  At the other end of the spectrum we have Romania vs Tonga, Portugal vs Fiji and Georgia vs Canada.

autumn internationalsAs an All Blacks fan my attention is focused on seeing the most experienced All Blacks starting team ever, playing France.  The French have had a horrible run this year including a disappointing Six Nations and tour to New Zealand in June, but they love upsetting the All Blacks and will look to take on the All Blacks at set pieces.  The All Blacks were patchy against Japan and hence why the best team in the world has called in their experienced starters in an attempt to avoid a potential banana skin which could quash their attempts to go through the entire season without losing a game, something they haven’t achieved since 1997.

Other matches of interest includes Ireland vs Samoa.  Samoa don’t play together enough for my liking because I am a massive fan of the way they play the game.  They will be fired up for this match after the recent death of their legendary skipper from the 1991 Rugby World Cup, Peter Fatialofa.  In Ireland’s favour is that Samoa hasn’t had much time together yet and  this game is being played in Ireland.  I have still gone for Ireland to win a closer than expected game.

The Wales vs South Africa game will be exciting.  I love the Welsh style of play and they have named a great side, but they will have their work cut out for them with the Springboks in top form this season.  I am picking the Springboks to edge Wales following an impressive Rugby Championship.

Can the Wallabies break their winning drought this season?  I say that the Wallabies haven’t been helped by playing the Springboks and All Blacks so often.  Hopefully for rugby’s sake, they gain some confidence by beating Italy.  They need to decide on a set team so that they stop chopping and changing.  They need a captain to stand up too and lead by example.

England should maintain their strong record at the fortress of Twickenham.  Argentina can be a tough team to beat depending on the style of game being played.  England won’t want to have to rely on the referee like they did against the Wallabies last week and they won’t want to get caught out having an eye on the All Blacks who they play later this month.

It is difficult to get a gauge on some of the other matches this round.  There are some of the lesser lights of world rugby hosting slightly beater ranked teams, but it will be difficult to judge how much the home ground advantage affects the result and margin.  I think some of these November Internationals will be closer than expected.

Here are my November International Autumn Round 2 Tests SuperBru Picks, who are you picking?

GameDate and timeYour pick
[4] Georgia v Canada9 Nov 14:00 (local)
9 Nov 23:00 (your time*)
Canada by 7
[5] Italy v Australia9 Nov 14:00 (local)
10 Nov 02:00 (your time*)
Australia by 21
[6] England v Argentina9 Nov 14:30 (local)
10 Nov 03:30 (your time*)
England by 14
[7] Scotland v Japan9 Nov 14:30 (local)
10 Nov 03:30 (your time*)
Scotland by 14
[8] Wales v South Africa9 Nov 17:30 (local)
10 Nov 06:30 (your time*)
South Africa by 14
[9] Ireland v Samoa9 Nov 17:45 (local)
10 Nov 06:45 (your time*)
Ireland by 7
[10] France v New Zealand9 Nov 20:00 (local)
10 Nov 08:00 (your time*)
New Zealand by 14
[23] Portugal v Fiji9 Nov 15:00 (local)
10 Nov 04:00 (your time*)
Fiji by 14
[24] Romania v Tonga9 Nov 18:30 (local)
10 Nov 06:30 (your time*)
Tonga by 14
[25] USA v New Zealand Maori9 Nov 19:30 (local)
10 Nov 14:30 (your time*)
New Zealand Maori by 21

http://www.superrugbytips.com/2013/11/the-november-autumn-internationals.html

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