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£250,000 gamble on England winning the 2011 Rugby World Cup

| 24.04.2011

The Rugby Football Union stands to make £2.5m should England win the Rugby World Cup after the governing body placed a six-figure bet at odds of 8/1 yesterday.

Should England win the World Cup – they are 9/1 to do so at Ladbrokes – the RFU face a cost of around £2.5m in bonuses to players and staff, and English rugby’s governing body have placed the bet in order to cover costs.

30 players will take their place in the England squad that will head to New Zealand in the Autumn for rugby’s showpiece, and each player is expected to receive around £50,000 in bonuses, while backroom coaching staff are also on high incentives.

At 9/1 England are the fourth favourites in the Rugby World Cup betting to land the Webb Ellis Cup with hosts New Zealand favoured at 8/11, Australia at 4/1 and South Africa at 13/2.

It’s a huge gamble from the RFU and one that will attract a lot of debate, but to stake £250,000 must mean the governing body has every face in Martin Johnson and his team.

Following a strong showing in the Six Nations, there is plenty of optimism surrounding England’s World Cup bid and while the sports insurance market calculates England have an 11 per cent chance of lifting the trophy, there are plenty of backers preparing for a successful campaign.

While gambles like this are usually kept confidential it seems governing bodies who place bets to cover their costs are a growing activity and as sports betting continues to grow, this kind of story is one we are likely to encounter more and more.

A £10 stake on England winning the 2011 Rugby World Cup would return £45. New customers can sign up here to take advantage of a free rugby bet worth up to £30.



Robbie Morris

Robbie studied sports journalism at the University of Gloucestershire, an establishment chosen for its proximity to Cheltenham racecourse, where he was a season ticket holder. Upon graduation, Robbie was a contributor to GolfPunk, a national magazine aimed at ridding golf of its traditionalist image, before joining the news.ladbrokes team.