The Six Nations is the main international rugby union tournament for European sides, and takes place annually at the beginning of the year. Six Nations betting sites always attract plenty of punters, with the tournament now more popular than ever. England, Scotland, Ireland, Wales, France and Italy are the participant nations, with venues such as Twickenham, Murrayfield and Landsdowne Road familiar to many thousands of fans.
Here, we’ll take a closer look at this long-running rugby union tournament and its history. We’ll also examine some options for Six Nations betting sites, and give you a few tips on how to make your rugby union betting strategies pay off.
6 Nations Betting Sites
One thing that complete novices to rugby betting might not know is that there are two codes of rugby: rugby union and rugby league. This article is focused on rugby union betting. Rugby league betting has its own section on most betting websites, so you need to be aware of the difference. The split between the codes and the subsequent animosity between them is beyond the scope of this article, but it is worth looking into for sports fans.
The Six Nations as a tournament features each team playing five games. Every team plays every other in the competition, and there are no semi-finals or final. The winner of the tournament is determined by whichever team is top of the league table after each team has played five games. Many Six Nations betting sites offer markets on the overall winner of the competition, and this is what attracts the attention of many casual punters who are not perhaps committed rugby union fans.
Finding the best 6 Nations betting site: Things to consider
If you are a keen Six Nations odds checker, then you will be familiar with the different types of bet which can be placed on the tournament. Probably the most popular market for punters who use 6 Nations betting sites is to bet on the overall winner of the tournament.
Betting on the overall tournament winner requires you to take into account the fixture schedule of each team. Teams split their matches between home and away games, with countries alternating venues each year. For example, if France play England in Paris one year, they will play them at Twickenham the next. Home venues play a big part in shaping results – Scotland have not beaten England at Twickenham since 1983, for example.
Another event that rugby union punters can bet on is whether or not a team will win the Grand Slam or Triple Crown. These are not trophies in their own right. The Grand Slam is when a team secures a 100% record, beating every team in the tournament. The Triple Crown is where one of Scotland, Wales, Ireland or England beats the other three of the so-called ‘home nations’ of Britain and Ireland. A team can win the Triple Crown, but come nowhere near winning the whole tournament.
Other markets which are usually available for the whole tournament include which team will finish bottom of the table, also referred to as the Wooden Spoon. Punters using Six Nations betting sites can also bet on which team or individual player will score the most tries in the tournament.
Finding the best online bookmakers for rugby union
In addition to betting on overall outcomes for the whole tournament, there is a myriad of options available for the individual matches of the tournament at 6 Nations betting sites. Most punters will be drawn to the straightforward match result markets, where you bet on which team will win matches. The Six Nations can be tricky to predict, and betting on match outcomes can be harder than it is in other sports, such as Premier League soccer or World Cup cricket.
Home advantage plays a big part in the Six Nations, with teams traditionally being much stronger when playing on their home turf. If you check the Scotland to beat England odds, and the game is at Twickenham, then the odds on Scotland will lengthen considerably. Scotland will have a much lower price for the game if it is played at Murrayfield, their home ground in Edinburgh. Italy also tend to be much stronger when playing at home in Rome than when they are on their travels.
Some bookmakers offer fewer rugby union markets than others. An important part of choosing the best Six Nations betting site is to make sure that a full range of markets is available. The full range of markets on offer will become clearer closer to the beginning of the tournament in February, so keen punters are best advised to check bookies at this time of year.
Types of betting at 6 Nations betting sites
An interesting market to bet on in rugby union is the handicap. This is when each team is given a positive or negative number by the bookie. This number is the amount of points that the bookie expects the team to score or concede. This means that you can bet on a team with a negative handicap, they can lose, and you will still win your bet. For example, Italy may have a -24 handicap when the play France in Paris. If Italy lose 23-0, or 24-10, then you will still have won your bet if you placed it on Italy. Similarly, France would need to win by more than 24 points for your bet on them to come in.
Accumulators can also be fun when betting on the Six Nations. With three games played on each weekend of the tournament, a three-fold accumulator with a bet on each game can be lucrative too. When looking for good Six
Nations betting sites it is also well worth considering betting on accumulators. Odds-on favourites for Six Nations games are often very short, so multiplying them together with an accumulator is a good way of maximising the chance of collecting big winnings.
The best Six Nations operators
How to find the best 6 Nations betting site
There is a plethora of options nowadays when it comes to choosing bookmakers. The main thing to check is that the site you choose does offer a good variety of markets. A site that just offers markets on overall winners of the tournament, or just on match results, is best avoided. It helps to have accounts with more than one bookie too, so that you can compare the odds which are on offer, and give yourself a greater range of options.
Comparing the odds on offer at different bookies is a useful thing to do too, when choosing Six Nations betting sites. Some bookies may well be offering better value on their odds than others, especially when it comes to winners of individual matches. It is also a good idea to have an account at a betting exchange such as Betfair. This allows you to bet on teams to lose (lay bets), and potentially use some matched betting strategies. This can be a profitable way of turning bets on England v any of the countries into good winnings.
It is also worth checking out the kind of live betting options that are available. Live betting on rugby union can be good fun, simply because the complexity of the game leads to a host of different events on which you can bet. Live markets on cards, penalties and even set piece outcomes such as scrums and lineouts are available at some bookies. If you’re looking to bet on the Six Nations 2018, then this is something worth investigating.
Possible options for the best Six Nations betting site
You will find some good rugby union betting options at these three sites. All three offer a good range of rugby union markets, as well as welcome bonuses for new customers. There are also good options for betting on horse racing and a wide variety of other sports.
Ladbrokes: British bookie with a big reputation
Ladbrokes is a well-established British bookie with a reputation for solid customer service and a good range of betting markets. The welcome bonus for new customers is £20 of free bets, in return for a first bet of at least £5. There is a good range of rugby union markets available. So, too, is an ongoing series of promotions and bonuses linked to specific sporting events, so it is worth checking back just ahead of the Six Nations kicking off in February to see what is available. Ladbrokes also offers its customers live streaming of rugby union matches, which is a very handy feature for most punters, especially those who enjoy live betting.
Paddy Power: The Irish option
Paddy Power is an Irish bookmaker which is well known for its cheeky marketing campaigns, as well as its event bonuses. There is often a bonus on offer for Six Nations games, so it is worth having an account at Paddy Power to be able to take advantage of these. The bookie also pays close attention to the Ireland team’s games. The welcome bonus at Paddy Power is a £10 risk free first bet, with new punter receiving their stake back in cash if their first bet loses.
Look carefully for Six Nations betting sites
If you found that your Six Nations predictions in 2017 were pretty accurate, then it might be time to find some 6 Nations betting sites. Key things to consider are the range of markets and whether or not live betting on rugby union is on offer. It is also worth weighing up the welcome bonuses of different betting sites. Always bear in mind that you can have an account with more than one bookie too.