2017-11-13 by Phantom
M1: Italy v Argentina
Two teams who have not lived up to expectations in 2017 meet in Italy. The hosts had to knuckle down to beat Fiji last weekend while Argentina lifted their game when going down to England at Twickenham in their first match on tour. This match will probably be tight and both teams will try and dominate in the tight exchanges. The northern hemisphere teams have had an edge so far this month so maybe Italy can get close.
M2: England v Australia
England were not box office when they beat Argentina last weekend but they have kept their cards close to their chests. That could have been an Eddie Jones masterplan. Australia huffed and puffed to beat Wales on Saturday but they got the job done and avoided a potential banana peel in the process. Both teams will improve with their first outings this international tour under the belt. There will be a lot of needle to this. There always is when Eddie Jones and Michael Cheika face off. England are tipped to win though.
M3: Scotland v New Zealand
Scotland managed to topple Samoa last weekend in a high scoring match but this will be an entirely different challenge. New Zealand always had their match with France under control and they cruised during the second half to add some respectability to the score from a French perspective. New Zealand will win this and win this well.
M4: Ireland v Fiji
Ireland may play a few games with their selection but ultimately they should be too strong for Fiji who will be physical and ask awkward questions. The Irish have kicked on and become a serious rugby nation and their performance against South Africa was testament to how good they can be.
M5: France v South Africa
Both teams will be fired up. There is so much pressure from both sets of supporters to make the troubles of 2017 right. France were in South Africa in June and lost the series 3-0. Maybe that will have some impact on how this match will be played. Allister Coetzee needs to make changes. Last weekend was one of the worst performances in Springbok history, and there have been a few bad ones over the last two years. Both teams need to bounce back and France could havean edge. But it is unlikely that it will be one-sided.