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Australia vs New Zealand Tips - Kiwis take it to the Kangaroos in Pacific Championship

jeremy-darke
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Last updated: 26 Oct 2023
Jeremy Darke 26 Oct 2023
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  • Australia vs New Zealand predictions for Saturday’s Pacific Championship game
  • 4 of the last 5 games between Australia and New Zealand have gone Under 42.5 game points
  • Will the Kiwis get revenge?
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New Zealand Kiwis
New Zealand will be out for revenge against Australia. (Photo by Fiona Goodall/Getty Images)

Australia vs New Zealand Tips


The Kiwis will be out for sweet revenge when they take on Australia for the first time since their agonising two-point defeat in the semi-final of the 2022 World Cup.

Although we would like to see these two teams go head-to-head at full strength, that is not going to be the case with the Australian coach Mal Meniga rotating out a substantial amount of players from the side he picked against Samoa.

The Kiwis have taken a different approach and have named the same 17 that did a number on Samoa last week 50-0.

The line is at 9.5 with the Kangaroos as the favourites, which I am going to fade for the above reason. Combinations are key and although the backline is pretty much the same for Australia, the Kangaroos two best performers in the game against Samoa, Payne Haas and Tino Fa’asuamaleau, have been left out, which will see a territory shift to the Kiwis.

The game total is also set at 42.5, which is a little high I believe, as we should see more of a defensive and field position battle. Meanwhile, the try-scoring form of Jamayne Isaako has put money in the bank all season and with a couple against Samoa.

  • Australia have rested 4 starters from last game.
  • The last time Australia and New Zealand met the game total was just 30 points.
  • New Zealand have lost by less than 10 points in 2 of their last 3 games against Australia.
  • Jamayne Isakko scored 24 tries in 24 games for the Dolphins this season.

Head to Head 


The last time Australia and New Zealand met was in the semifinal of the World Cup, with the Kangaroos coming back from a 14-10 deficit at halftime to win 16-10 with Cameron Murray scoring the game-winner in the second half.

Australia Form


Australia took care of Samoa in the opening game of the Pacific Championships, with the Kangaroos getting up 38-12.

It was not an overly polished performance from the star-studded Aussies, however, they did what they had to do to contain whatever Samoa tried to throw at them. 

The front-rowers from Australia were the real difference in the engine room, with Payne Haas and Tino Fa’asuamaleau running for over 130 metres each and both recording a linebreak.

Australia also found a spark from Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow who crossed the line on either side of halftime to give Australia a comfortable buffer in the second half.

Australia Team News


Valentine Holmes, having completed his suspension, has been chosen for the wing, taking over from Selwyn Cobbo.

A new front-row partnership featuring Jake Trbojevic and Tom Flegler will replace Payne Haas and Tino Fa’asuamaleaui, who are resting.

Liam Martin has been moved down to the 18th man position, and Reuben Cotter has been selected to take his place in the backrow.

Nicho Hynes has been listed on the bench and will make his debut for the Kangaroos, alongside Flegler.

Despite Harry Grant also being named on the bench, the Cronulla halfback will serve as a utility player.

Australia Team List


1. James Tedesco
2. Dylan Edwards
3. Hamiso Tabuai-Fidow
4. Kotoni Staggs
5. Valentine Holmes
6. Cameron Munster
7. Daly Cherry-Evans
8. Jake Trbojevic
9. Ben Hunt
10. Tom Flegler
11. Cameron Murray
12. Reuben Cotter
13. Isaah Yeo

Interchange

14. Harry Grant
15. Lindsay Collins
16. Pat Carrigan
17. Nicho Hynes

Reserves

18. Liam Martin
19. Selwyn Cobbo
20. Tino Fa’asuamaleaui
21. Payne Haas

New Zealand Form


The Kiwis did a real number on Samoa in their match last week, sending them home with a giant duck egg for their troubles.

New Zealand looked sharp in their 50-0 belting of Samoa last Saturday. The Kiwis had 65% of the territory, ran for over 700 more metres and had 12 linebreaks to Samoa’s 0.

Jamayne Isaako continued his NRL-leading try-scoring form with a double on the night and scored almost half of the Kiwi’s points with his 2 tries and 7 goals. The winger also tallied 2 linebreaks and 8 tackle busts.

New Zealand Team News


The New Zealanders have named the same 17 that beat Samoa 50-0.

New Zealand Team List


1. Charnze Nicoll-Klokstad
2. Ronaldo Mulitalo
3. Matthew Timoko
4. Joseph Manu
5. Jamayne Isaako
6. Dylan Brown
7. Jahrome Hughes
8. James Fisher-Harris
9. Kieran Foran
10. Moses Leota
11. Isaiah Papali’i
12. Briton Nikora
13. Joseph Tapine

Interchange

14. Fa'amanu Brown
15. Nelson Asofa-Solomona
16. Griffin Neame
17. Leo Thompson

Reserves

18. Naufahu Whyte
19. Danny Levi
20. Wiremu Greig
21. Keano Kini

Verdict

The Kiwis are out to win the Pacific Championship and will want nothing more than to get a victory over the Australians. The 9.5 point start is a gift which the Kiwis will cover if they do not take victory.

This game will be tussle with more defence than the opening two weeks, so the Under game total will hit. Jamayne Isaako continues to score at least a try a game in 2023 so he will go over for a 4-pointer.

Best Bet1: NZ +9.5 Handicap Line @10/11 at bet365 Australia - 3 Units
Best Bet2: Over 42.5 Game Total @10/11 at Neds - 2 Units
Best Bet3: Jamayne Isaako Anytime Tryscorer @6/4 at Topsport - 1 Unit
Best Bet4: Jamayne Isaako First Tryscorer @11/1 at Boombet - 1 Unit
NZ +9.5
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Australia v New Zealand