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2021 Tokyo Olympics: Rugby 7s Preview & Betting Tips

July 23rd 2021, 2:20pm, By: Jim Tucker

Olympic Rugby 7s Betting Tips

Footy does have a foothold at the Tokyo Olympics with the frantic action of Rugby Sevens. It’s a blur of tries, seven-minute halves and skills at high pace. The three-day men’s competition starts on Monday and the women kick-off next Thursday. Rugby expert Jim Tucker has you covered with a preview.  

Tokyo Olympic Rugby 7s Betting Tips

Men’s Rugby Sevens 

Mon, July 26-Wed, July 28 

The Aussies have some excellent players and a supreme strategist and coach in Tim Walsh, who guided the girls to gold in Rio in 2016. He’s gone left field and picked former Wallaby Samu Kerevi. Kerevi will never play the 14 minutes of a game. He may play six or seven but he just changes the shape of a game. He’s a big ball-carrier who needs two defenders to stop an offload so that can create an overlap. He has good hands and can damage with his tackling. Opponents may see a slower body they can run around. Kerevi is a worthy gamble.  

The Aussies have to find something more than Maurice Longbottom’s jazzy feet and the all-round skills of Lachlan Anderson, Nick Malouf, Lewis Holland, Joe Pincus and Co to medal here.   

The draw. The Aussies will knock over Argentina (11.30am Mon) and South Korea (7pm Mon) on Day One so it’s all on the line against old foes New Zealand on Day Two (11.30am Tues).  

The Aussies lost eight straight games to the Kiwis in recent warm-ups, albeit getting close at 24-21 in Townsville most recently.  

Upset the Kiwis and a quarter-final opens up against a weak team. You might then face Great Britain or the USA in a semi but you avoid NZ and hotshots Fiji until the gold medal match. That's the dream ride. 

Lose the pool game against NZ and the Aussies would likely face South Africa in a quarter-final for the right to face Fiji in a semi. That’s deadend-ville. 

The Aussies are $9.50 outsiders as the fifth-ranked team with Sportsbet. Fair enough. That’s probably too short because to win gold they would likely have to beat NZ twice or NZ and Fiji once apiece. 

Even the $3.30 to win a medal is a tough ask. You are better off taking $6 for the Aussies to top Pool A which is essentially $6 to beat the Kiwis. The Aussies have the skill for a one-off boilover like that so I’m tipping that as the value bet. 

The Fijians will relish the hot weather in Tokyo and won’t care if there’s no crowd. The $3 for them to win gold and sing beautifully is my tip for the winner although the $3.60 Kiwis are always big dangers. 

Australia Win Pool A


Women’s Rugby Sevens 

Thurs, July 29-Sat, July 31  

It’s reflective of the status of women’s sevens that the final is being staged on “Super Saturday.” The glow from Australia’s 2016 gold medal in Rio ignited women’s rugby in Australia.  

The Kiwis have taken over as sevens’ queens since by winning 16 of the 22 World Series tournaments post-2016 plus the 2018 Commonwealth Games gold and Rugby World Cup Sevens. 

If any team can beat them, it’s Charlotte Caslick’s Aussies. The Australians beat the Kiwis once during six warm-up games in Auckland. It was instructive that long-striding young gun Madison Ashby ran in a long-range try. 

The Aussies have been waiting for the right revitalisation of their ranks from young stars. Ashby is one and Gold Coast Suns AFLW teen Maddison Levi is another. Levi has an excellent vertical jump to win re-starts to earn extra possession which is such a key part of sevens. 

To succeed, the Aussies really need Caslick and Vani Pelite to excel, have a tyro explode and co-captains Sharni Williams and Shannon Parry bring more physical edge. The Aussies play a run-and-stun style compared to the heavier physical style of the Canadian girls, who are often a bad match-up when they meet. 

The Kiwi girls have been living with the sting of silver in Rio for five years. They are exceptional. Ruby Tui, Portia Woodman and Michaela Blyde have all won World Rugby’s Women’s Sevens Player of the Year award. They are a fast and complete team.  

The Aussies are the only team who can upset them so that is the classic gold medal match we all want to see. 

The Aussies will blitz Japan (11.30am, Thurs) and China (6.30pm, Thurs) in Pool C before a tricky clash against the physical Americans (11.30am, July 30). 

The Aussies are on track to face Great Britain in the quarter-finals but it’s the likely semi-final against Canada that is the big one.  

There’s not much betting value around with NZ at $1.28 to win the gold. Canada to win a medal at $2 is a good multiplier to roll into multis. 

Canada Any Medal



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