Stephen Richardson picks out the best bets from a big weekend of International Rugby Union action.
Ireland have never beaten New Zealand in the 29 Tests since their first meeting in 1905 (one Dublin draw in 1973) and it is hard to see them conquering these mighty All Blacks on Saturday night in Chicago.
All Blacks head coach Steve Hansen and his side have taken the international retirements after last year's World Cup win of legends Richie McCaw and Dan Carter and more stars in their stride to extend their Test-winning streak to a world record 19.
And for all the many outrageous scorelines, with many sublimely stylish tries, this season's ten successes have been built on the solid substance of calculated continuity and defensive determination. Only at home to Argentina have the All Blacks underestimated the capabilities of opponents (Australia were flimsy in the first-half of their first meeting) and Hansen's response to loose tackling and breakdown protection on that occasion was to haul off supposed untouchables - with the desired effect of a second-half romp.
Backing NEW ZEALAND to give up 12 points on the second-half handicap looks the bet at Soldier Field.
The All Blacks won't underestimate Ireland. Plenty of them were involved in the teams' last meeting at the Aviva in 2013 when they stole victory in injury-time with a touchline-converted Ryan Crotty try. The previous year, in Christchurch, Carter dropped a goal to sneak a three-point win too, although the Tests either side were strolls.
Hansen, his coaching staff and senior players have plenty of respect for the scheming of compatriot Joe Schmidt in charge of Ireland also. They won the first Test in South Africa this summer and lost the following two by less than ten points.
Schmidt may be rebuilding Ireland still after the retirements in successive years of the totemic Brian O'Driscoll and Paul O'Connell but he's not jettisoned the fabric of what made them back-to-back Six Nations victors before England's Grand Slam. That fabric was a solid set-piece, uptempo rolling maul and defensive tactics and an injection of pace out wide when space and time allows. Injuries have got in the way of series/title success in that last year but not in the way of competitiveness. That should be the case again in the Windy City on Saturday night with Ireland competitive but the All Blacks juggernaut just proving too strong.Bet £10 Get £20
On Saturday afternoon in Cardiff, WALES bid to stop the rot of 11 straight losses to the Wallabies since 2008 including a 15-9, try-less World Cup pool stage defeat last year when they suffered a bout of white line fever.
And while the Red Dragons are without the hugely influential Sam Warburton, Alun Wyn Jones and Taulupe Faletau, 11-8 looks a fair price about them achieving the aim.
Wales were under-strength in the summer too and they showed up well for the majority of the first two Tests against the All Blacks before running out of steam totally in the third match. And they've had time to take stock of that tour and got some players back both in the scrum and behind it, including Leigh Halfpenny at full-back.
By contrast, Australia keep rolling from one disaster to another with three home Test defeats to England and three maulings to all intents and purposes against New Zealand interspersed with underwhelming wins over Argentina and one scratchy success over South Africa and one scratchy defeat to the Springboks.
Of course, they have fabulous individuals like Michael Hooper and David Pocock, who can wrestle a match away from a side in seconds but the Wallabies just don't seem to be playing like a team in control for long enough periods.
And that is one thing you can almost guarantee Wales will be, roared on by their passionate crowd, presumably under the Principality Stadium roof.
At Wembley it will be interesting to see if South Africa play their game with the Barbarians in the free-styling spirit that tradition dictates. They've lost their last two meetings and with much rancour at the current state of theSpringboks, it wouldn't surprise if they started at Test-match intensity. It is certainly worth a watch and if there must bet, Jesse Kriel looks big for a try at 6-4. Kriel has had a quiet season but is an explosive runner.