Rugby World Cup 2019 Betting Offers

japan 2019 rugby world cupRugby Union took a long time to sort itself out on the international stage and as a consequence the 2019 tournament is only the 9th ever Rugby World Cup.  Take one look at the event however and you would think it has existed forever, such is the passion, emotion and pride elicited by World Cup nations and fans.  Football, and many other sports, could do with taking a few pointers.

The 2019 World Cup comes from Japan and is the first time the tournament has been held in an Asian country.  Twenty teams will contest 48 ties over a period of 6 weeks culminating in the final on Saturday November 2nd.  England have a tough pool again as they did in 2015 and Australia will again face Wales in the same group.

On this page we show you the latest and best free bet, money back and enhanced odds offers both before and during the world cup.  You can find information about fixtures, stadiums, format, stats and history further down to.

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Rugby World Cup Welcome Specials

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Latest Rugby World Cup Offers

For all Rugby League and Rugby Union matches that go into extra time at bet365. Applies to pre-match bets placed on full-time and second half markets. Bet restrictions and T&Cs apply. New and eligible customers only.
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Latest 2019 World Cup Outright Winner Odds

Site New Zealand Ireland England Australia Wales Scotland Visit
betfred 10/11 9/2 6/1 7/1 16/1 25/1
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bet365 11/10 9/2 6/1 8/1 18/1 25/1
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coral 10/11 4/1 11/2 9/1 20/1 33/1
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william-hill 10/11 4/1 7/1 8/1 12/1 25/1
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888-sport 11/10 5/1 6/1 7/1 18/1 28/1
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Odds updated 04/07/2018

World Cup Draw

Pool A Pool B Pool C Pool D
Ireland (4) New Zealand (1) England (2) Australia (3)
Scotland (5) South Africa (7) France (6) Wales (8)
Japan (11) Italy (15) Argentina (9) Georgia (12)
Romania Africa Qualifier United States Figi
Europe v Oceania Qualifier Best Non-Qualifier Tonga Uruguay

In May 2017 the draw for the World Cup was made in Tokyo. The 12 teams that finished in the top 3 in their groups at the 2015 world cup qualify automatically. The eight other teams will be defined by the end of 2018 through continental and intercontinental play-offs.

Numbers in brackets represent rankings at the time of the draw.

Rugby World Cup 2019 Fixtures

Pool A Fixtures

Date Time (UK) Fixture Location Stadium
20th September 11:45 Japan v Romania Chōfu Tokyo Stadium
22nd September  08:45  Ireland v Scotland Yokohama International Stadium
24th September  11:15  Romania v Play Off Winner Kumagaya Kumagaya Stadium
28th September  08:15  Japan v Ireland Fukuroi  Shizuoka Stadium
30th September  11:15  Scotland v Play Off Winner  Kobe  Kobe Misake Stadium
3rd October  11:15  Ireland v Romania  Kobe  Kobe Misake Stadium
5th October  11:30  Japan v Play Off Winner  Toyota  City of Toyota Stadium
9th October  08:15  Scotland v Romania  Fukuroi Shizuoka Stadium
12th October  11:45  Ireland v Play Off Winner  Fukuoka  Fukuoka Hakatanomori
13th October  11:45  Japan v Scotland  Yokohama  International Stadium

Pool B Fixtures

Date Time (UK) Fixture Location Stadium
21st September 10:45 New Zealand v South Africa Yokohama International Stadium
22nd September  06:15  Italy v Africa Q Higashiōsaka  Hanazona Stadium
26th September  08:45  Italy v Best Runner Up  Fukuoka  Fukuoka Hakatanomori
28th September  10:45  South Africa v Africa Q  Toyota  City of Toyota Stadium
2nd October  11:15  New Zealand v Best Runner Up  Ōita  Ōita Stadium
4th October  10:45  South Africa v Italy  Fukuroi  Shizuoka Stadium
6th October  05:45  New Zealand v Africa Q  Chōfu  Tokyo Stadium
8th October  11:15  South Africa v Best Runner Up  Kobe  Kobe Misake Stadium
12th October  05:45  New Zealand v Italy  Toyota  City of Toyota Stadium
13th October  04:15  Africa Q v Best Runner Up  Kamasishi   Kamasishi Recovery Memorial

Pool C Fixtures

Date Time (UK) Fixture Location Stadium
21st September 08:15 France v Argentina Chōfu Tokyo Stadium
22nd September  11:15 England v Tonga  Sapporo Sapporo Dome
26th September  11:45  England v USA  Kobe  Kobe Misake Stadium
28th September  05:45  Argentina v Tonga  Higashiōsaka  Hanazona Stadium
2nd October  08:45 France v USA  Fukuoka  Fukuoka Hakatanomori
5th October  09:00  England v Argentina  Chōfu  Tokyo Stadium
6th October  08:45  France v Tonga  Kumamoto  Kumamoto Stadium
9th October  05:45  Argentina v USA  Kumagaya  Kumagaya Stadium
12th October  09:15  England v France  Yokohama  International Stadium
13th October  06:45  USA v Tonga  Higashiōsaka  Hanazona Stadium

Pool D Fixtures

Date Time (UK) Fixture Location Stadium
21st September 05:45 Australia v Fiji Sapporo Sapporo Dome
23rd September  11:15  Wales v Georgia  Toyota  City of Toyota Stadium
25th September  06:15  Figi v Uruguay  Kamasishi  Kamasishi Recovery Memorial
29th September  06:15  Georgia v Uruguay  Kumagaya  Kumagaya Stadium
29th September  08:45  Australia v Wales  Chōfu  Tokyo Stadium
3rd October  06:15  Georgia v Figi  Higashiōsaka  Hanazona Stadium
5th October 06:15  Australia v Uruguay  Ōita  Ōita Stadium
9th October  10:45  Wales v Figi  Ōita  Ōita Stadium
11th October  11:15  Australia v Georgia  Fukuroi  Shizuoka Stadium
13th October  09:15  Wales v Uruguay  Kumamoto  Kumamoto Stadium

Quarter Finals

Fixture Date Time (UK) Stadium
Winner Pool C v Runner Up Pool D 19th October 08:15 Ōita Stadium
Winner Pool B v Runner Up Pool A 19th October 11:15 Tokyo Stadium
Winner Pool D v Runner Up Pool C 20th October 08:15 Ōita Stadium
Winner Pool A v Runner Up Pool B 20th October 11:15 Tokyo Stadium

Semi Finals

Fixture Date Time (UK) Stadium
Winner Q1 v Winner Q2 26th October 09:00 Yokohama International Stadium
Winner Q3 v Winner Q4 27th October 09:00 Tokyo Stadium

Third Place Play Off

Fixture Date Time (UK) Stadium
Loser S1 v Loser S2 1st November 09:00 Tokyo Stadium

World Cup 2019 Final

Fixture Date Time (UK) Stadium
Winner S1 v Winner S2 2nd November 09:00 Yokohama International Stadium

World Cup Format and Venues

The tournament will run from Friday 20th September through to Saturday 2nd November 2019 with 20 teams contesting 48 matches overall.  There are 40 pool matches as each team in each pool plays each other once, this means four games per team an ten games per pool, followed by four quarter finals, two semi finals, a third place play-off and the final.

Once the eight qualifying teams are known alongside the 12 automatic qualifiers the final mixture draw will be made.  What we do know is the first fixture will take place in Tokyo Stadium on the opening Friday between hosts Japan and another Pool A team.  The final will take place on the final Saturday in Yokohama Stadium in Kangawa.

During the pool stage teams can win 4 points for a win and two points for a draw.  In addition to this teams can earn an additional bonus point for achieving four or more tries in a game, this applies to both winning and losing teams should both teams score 4+.  Any team that loses by 7 or less points will also receive a bonus point.  The possible points scoring is therefore as follows:

Result Tries Losing Margin Match Points
Win Over 4 N/A 5
Win Less Than 4 N/A 4
Draw Over 4 N/A 3
Draw Less Than 4 N/A 2
Lose Over 4 7 or Less 2
Lose Less Than 4 7 or Less 1
Lose Less Than 4 8 or More 0

The maximum number of points a team could achieve in four pool matches would be 20.  A team could also, in theory, lose all games and achieve 8 points.

Following the group stages the winner and runner-up from the same pool can not meet each other again until the final (see fixtures).

World Cup Stadiums

Stadium Opened Capacity Notes
Sapporo Dome 2001 41,410 Retractable Surface
Kamaishi Memorial Stadium 2018 16,187 Smallest Venue
Kumagaya Rugby Stadium 1991 24,000 Althletic Track
Tokyo Stadium 2000 49,970 Japan National Stadium
Yokohama International Stadium 1997 72,327 World Cup Final Venue
Shizuoka Stadium Ecopa 2001 50,889 Opened for FIFA WC
City of Toyota Stadium 2001 45,000 Retractable Roof
Hanazono Rugby Stadium 1929 30,000 Oldest Rugby Venue
Kobe Misaki Stadium 2001 30,132 Retractable Roof
Fukuoka Hakatanomori Stadium 1995 22,563 Multi-Purpose Venue
Kumamoto Stadium 1998 32,000 Multi-Purpose Venue
Oita Stadium 2001 40,000 Retractable Roof

History of the Rugby Union World Cup

International Rugby games have been contested for longer than international Football matches yet it took until 1987 for the sport of Rugby Union to finally organise a World Cup.

The Six Nations, initially called the Home Nations Championship, began in 1883 between Wales, Scotland, Ireland and England; expanding to five nations when France joined in 1910.  International Rugby was also played at this time at the Olympic games, first appearing in 1900 it was however discontinued in 1924.

The idea of an international rugby event fell by the wayside for many decades.  This was partly to do with political tensions caused by World War II and the dissolution of the British Empire (of which many of the worlds top rugby nations were part of), but mainly due to a lack of appetite for a tournament from World Rugby (then called the International Rugby Board (IRB)).

Despite attempts to create a world rugby competition from the 1950’s onwards these were continually blocked by most unions within the IRB.

Following blocked attempts by Australia in 1983 and New Zealand in 1984, the two nations joined up for a final successful attempt was made 1985.  Delegates from France, South Africa, Australia and NZ all voted for a new World Cup, Scotland and Ireland voted against with England and Wales split.  The vote passed by 10-6 in favour and the first World Cup was jointly awarded to Australia and New Zealand.

1987 First World Cup

rugby player with trophyThe first World Cup consisted of 32 matches between 16 teams over 4 weeks from 22nd May to 20th June 1987.  Seven IRB nations automatically took a spot (except for South Africa who were banned from international sport at this time due to Apartheid).  These were England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, New Zealand, Australia and France.

There was no qualifying for the first event, the remaining 9 teams were invited: Argentina, Canada, Fiji, Italy, Japan, Romania, Tonga, USA and Zimbabwe.

Four pools of 4 teams competed in a round-robin group (2 points for win, 1 for a draw) followed by knockout quarter finals, semi finals and the final.  New Zealand beat France 29-9 in the final at Eden Park in Aukland to win the first ever Rugby world cup.

1991 to 1999

The 1991 World Cup was jointly held in Britain, France and Ireland and qualifying was introduced for the first time.  Eight places were given automatically to the quarter finalists from 1987 with the remaining 8 places were made up from 25 qualifiers.  England beat Australia 12-6 in the final at Twickenham watched by 56,208 fans.

South Africa participated in their first world cup in 1995, they also hosted the event.  South Africa won the event beating NZ in a final marred by food poisoning controversy by 15 points to 12.

The 1999 World Cup was expanded to 20 teams with 41 matches and was hosted by Wales.  Now only the top three teams from the last world cup along with the hosts received automatic entry.   No less than 65 nations competed in qualifying for the remaining 16 places.  Australia beat France 35-12 in the final following on from France’s shock victory over NZ in the semi-finals.

2003 to 2015

rugby player silhouettesThe 2003 World Cup in Australia is fondly remembered by English fans.  The final game was due to go to sudden death before Jonny Wilkinson’s drop goal with 21 seconds left won the tournament for England, who became the first team to lift the World Cup twice.  2003 saw the number of teams in each pool increase to 5 and the number of games increase to 48.  It has remained the same since.

England were defeated finalists in 2007, with South Africa winning their second title 15-6 in the Stade de France.

Following a long wait the All Blacks finally lived up to their reputation in 2011 winning the tournament as hosts, beating France in a tight low scoring final by 8 points to 7.

New Zealand went on to become the first nation to win consecutive world cups in 2015 beating rivals Australia 34 – 17.  The World Cup, hosted by England, became the first event to date in which the hosts have failed to reach the quarter-finals, although I suspect this could happen again in 2019 when Japan host the event.

Japan 2019

Japan are the first non-classical Rugby nation to host the world cup.  They have participated in all 8 tournaments so far but have failed to make it out of the pool stages, chalking up just three wins in all that time.

Whether Japan perform or not is unlikely to concern many at the 2019 event.  All people really want to know is can New Zealand make it three consecutive titles in a row, will England, Australia or South Africa become the first nation to win three cups or will Ireland, Wales or Scotland win a World Cup for the first time?

Webb Ellis Cup

The world cup trophy is named after William Webb Ellis, the proposed inventor of the modern game of Rugby which he played at Rugby school in the 1820’s.  He supposedly picked up the ball in a game of football and ran with it inaugurating the game of Rugby.

This is most likely a myth and there is no real evidence to support it but it is a good tale and a fair name to use for the World Cup trophy.

Records, Statistics & Trivia

Previous Rugby World Cup Winners

Year Winner Runner Up Result Host
2019 ? ? ? Japan
2015 New Zealand Australia 34-17 England
2011 New Zealand France 8-7 New Zealand
2007 South Africa England 15-6 France
2003 England Australia 20-17 Australia
1999 Australia France 35-12 Wales
1995 South Africa New Zealand 15-12 South Africa
1991 Australia England 12-6 Multiple
1987 New Zealand France 29-9 Australia & NZ

Team Statistics

Statistic Team Number Year(s)
Most Titles New Zealand  3  1987, 2011, 2015
Most Wins New Zealand  44 (37.5%)  1987 – 2015
Most Matches New Zealand 50 1987 – 2015
Highest Points (Overall) New Zealand 2302 1987 – 2015
Highest Points (Match) New Zealand  145 – 17  1995 vs Japan
Points Conceded (Overall) Japan 1259 1987 – 2015
Best Points Difference (Overall) New Zealand +1621 1987 – 2015
Worst Points Difference (Overall) Namibia -934 1987 – 2015
Biggest Win Australia  142 – 0  2003 vs Namibia
Most Tries (Overall) New Zealand 311 1987 – 2015
Most Tries (Match) Australia  22  2003 vs Namibia
Most Drop Goals (Overall) England 21 1987 – 2015
Most Conversions (Overall) New Zealand 226 1987 – 2015
Most Penalties (Overall) France 135 1987 – 2015
Most Red Cards (Overall) Canada & Tonga 3 1987 – 2015
Most Games Without Win Namibia  19  1999 – 2015
Consecutive Titles New Zealand  2  2011 & 2015
Most Hat-tricks Scored New Zealand  14  1987 – 2015
Most Hat-tricks Conceded Romania  7  1987 – 2015

Player Statistics

Statistic Player Number Year
 Points (Tournament)  Grant Fox (New Zealand)  126  1987
 Points (Match)  Simon Culhane (New Zealand)  45  1995
 Most Points (Overall)  Johnny Wilkinson (England)  277  1999 – 2011
 Tries (Tournament)  Jonah Lomu (NZ) & Bryan Habana (SA)  8  1999 & 2007
 Tries (Match)  Marc Ellis (New Zealand)  6 1995
 Tries (Overall) Jonah Lomu (NZ) & Bryan Habana (SA)  15  1995 – 1999 & 2007 – 2015
 Conversions (Tournament)  Grant Fox (New Zealand)  30 1987
 Conversions (Match)  Simon Culhane (New Zealand)  20  1995
 Conversions (Overall) Daniel Carter (New Zealand)  58  2003 – 2015
 Penalties (Tournament)  Gonzalo Quesada (Argentina)  31 1999
 Penalties (Match)  Multiple (4 Players)  8  1995 & 1994
 Penalties (Overall)  Johnny Wilkinson (England)  58  1999 – 2011
 Drop Goals (Tournament)   Johnny Wilkinson (England)  8  2003
 Drop Goals (Match)  Jannie de Beer (South Africa)  6  1999
 Drop Goals (Overall)   Johnny Wilkinson (England)  14  1999 – 2011
 Appearances (Overall)  Jason Leonard (Eng) & Richie McCaw (NZ)  22  1991-2003 & 2003-2015
 Appearances (Winning)  Richie McCaw (New Zealand)  20  2003 – 2015
 Appearances (Losing)  Ovidiu Tonita (Romania)  12  2003 – 2015
 Oldest Player  Diego Ormaechea (Uruguay)  40y 26d  1999
 Oldest to win cup  Brad Thorn (New Zealand)  36y 262d  2011
Oldest Tryscorer Diego Ormaechea (Uruguay) 40y 13d 1999
 Youngest Player  Vasil Lobzhanidze (Georgia)  18y 340d  2015
 Youngest to win cup  François Steyn (South Africa)  20y 159d  2007
 Youngest Tryscorer  George North (Wales)  19y 166d  2007

Tournament Statistics

Statistic Number Year
 Overall Attendance  England  2.5 Million  2015
 Average Attendance  England  51,621  2015
 Attendance Match Ireland v Romania (Wembley)  87,297  2015