According to forecasts by QBE Business Insurance, New Zealand are set to claim their fourth World Cup in impressive fashion without losing a single match in the tournament. The QBE Predictor shows that the All Blacks have a 42% chance of winning the whole tournament starting with a comfortable 34-18 victory predicted over hosts France this Friday night in one of the most eagerly anticipated World Cup opening matches. There are always fireworks when these two teams face off, especially at World Cups. They have faced each other seven times in tournament history with New Zealand claiming their first two titles by beating the French in the final. Although the All Blacks have the superior record, the last time these two teams faced off Les Bleus came out 40-25 winners.
France are second favourites to win the tournament with the QBE Predictor giving them a 16% chance of claiming their maiden World Cup on home soil. Surprisingly, England, who have been out of form in the past 12 months and are entering the tournament off the back of a first ever loss to Fiji, are given a 12% chance of winning the tournament according to the QBE Predictor. Despite having to face a strong Argentinian side, a Samoan team strengthened by ex-All Blacks and a Japan team which has performed strongly at the last two World Cups, the Predictor gives England a 66% chance of topping their group.
Other surprising predictions include the number one side in the world, Ireland, being given only a 5% chance of winning the tournament. Scotland are given a similar chance of success; therefore the group stage match between these two teams could ultimately decide their World Cup fortunes. A loss would likely mean an early exit at the group stages. The QBE Predictor shows Ireland winning 21-15. South Africa, who are in the ‘group of death’ alongside Ireland and Scotland, are only given a 7.5% chance of winning the tournament for the fourth time. This is especially surprising after their 35-7 demolition of New Zealand at Twickenham just under a fortnight ago.
Wales, who find themselves on the easier side of the draw, are given a better chance of winning the tournament than either Ireland or Scotland at 6.5%, but the QBE Predictor puts the likelihood of them losing in the quarter-finals at almost 50%. Australia, whose main focus appears to be on their home World Cup in 2027, are given a 5% chance of lifting the trophy in France. However, with the infamous Eddie Jones at the helm they could peak at the right time as his teams so often do at World Cups.
David Jones, Director of Underwriting at QBE, said:
“The QBE Predictor has rewarded France for its success in the last two years building up to their home World Cup although New Zealand are still clear favourites to win the tournament outright.”
“There is a chance England could put their recent form behind them and win a second World Cup but the formula predicts a 35% probability they lose in the quarter-finals or 36% that they make it to the semi-finals but lose then. While the numbers tell a story they often don’t give the full picture, which is why we need to be ready for the unexpected. Just as we advise businesses to prepare for any outcome, the players and coaches of every team should be prepared to take advantage of any unlikely occurrences and opportunities.”
The QBE Predictor is calculated using a complex mathematical formula and computer model that simulates the tournament 3,750 times producing outcomes from 180,000 games with every match replicated by generating a number of tries, conversions and penalties scored by each team. The predictions are based on analysis by QBE actuaries of how well each team has played in the past eight years against opposition of a similar ranking, as well as the success ratio for kickers, and the international experience of each team captain.
Predictions for the tournament
Predictions for this weekend’s standout games
The opening match of the tournament sees hosts France take on QBE Predictor favourites New Zealand at the Stade de France on Friday night. The QBE Predictor expects a comfortable 34-18 win for the All Blacks. On Saturday night England play Argentina in Marseille in what is likely to be their toughest group stage match. The QBE Predictor expects England to sneak to a 20-19 victory in a closely contested game. On Sunday afternoon in Marseille Scotland face off against South Africa in a crucial game for both teams. The QBE Predictor expects another close match with South Africa winning by one point 21-20. Sunday evening in Bordeaux sees Wales face Fiji, a team who have beaten them previously in a World Cup. The QBE Predictor does not expect history to repeat itself and sees the Welsh winning 36-18.
Authored by QBE