Southern hemisphere bookmakers favour Hurricanes for Super Rugby title

The Hurricanes have emerged from the confusion of the new Super Rugby format to be short favourites to lift this year's trophy.

As fans try to digest the ramifications of a competition that has been expanded to 18 teams and a conference system that now takes in the far-flung destinations of Asia and South America, it seems the one constant with the international bookmakers is that a New Zealand team will lift the title.

But exactly who isn't quite so clear in a competition where not every team plays each other and even the New Zealand teams don't all get involved in home and away tussles with their Kiwi rivals.

But it seems the Canes have been given a slight edge to finally break their duck and win the coveted silverware that has eluded them since 1996.

The New Zealand TAB have the Chiefs as favourites at $6.50 ahead of the Hurricanes at $7.50.

But in Australia, Centrebet have the Hurricanes at early favourites at $6 with the Chiefs at $7.

In South Africa, Interbet list the Hurricanes as R6.30 favourites, marginally ahead of the Chiefs at R6.50.

There seems to be universal agreement that Argentina's new outfit the Jaguares will be competitive with all three agencies listing them mid-table.

And there are no doubts that fellow additions – Japanese newcomers the Sunwolves and returning South African outfit the Kings – will be in a battle for the wooden spoon.

The TAB has the Sunwolves favourite for that unwanted honour, making them $501 outsiders to win the tournament and the Kings at $151.

The Australian bookies have the Sunwolves and Kings locked at $251 at the foot of the title market.

The South African bookies have the Sunwolves at the bottom of their spreadsheet at R300 to win the tournament with the Kings at R200.

The Waratahs are the most fancied Australian side just ahead of the Brumbies. And the ever-present Crusaders are right in the mix of agencies across the New Zealand, Australian and South African markets.

None of the bookmakers give the Highlanders must chance of repeating their surprise heroics from last year when they beat the Hurricanes in the final in Wellington.

The Blues, under new coach Tana Umaga, are tipped to be competitive without troubling the trophy engravers.

Here's how the bookies in the three major countries see the title race.


Chiefs $6.50, Hurricanes $7.50, Waratahs $8, Brumbies $8, Highlanders $8.50, Crusaders $8.50, Stormers $10, Sharks $13, Jaguares $13, Blues $18, Bulls $18, Lions $31, Reds $41, Rebels $61, Force $101, Cheetahs $101, Kings $151, Sunwolves $501.

AUSTRALIA (Centrebet)

Hurricanes $6, Chiefs $7, Waratahs $7.50, Crusaders $7.50,  Brumbies $9, Highlanders $9, Sharks $13, Jaguares $13, Stormers $15, Bulls $17, Blues $21, Reds $26, Lions $34, Rebels $51, Force $81, Cheetahs $81, Kings $251, Sunwolves $251.


Hurricanes R6.30, Chiefs R6.50, Crusaders $R7.30,  Waratahs R7.50, Brumbies R8.30, Highlanders R8.50, Stormers R12, Jaguares R12, Sharks R13, Bulls R17, Blues R19.50, Lions R29, Reds R31, Rebels R54, Force R78, Cheetahs R86, Kings R200, Sunwolves R300.