The British and Irish Lions drew first blood in their three-Test series with South Africa, and the world champions must bounce back in the second Test, which takes place on July 31. Read on to inform your South Africa vs. British & Irish Lions predictions.
South Africa vs. British & Irish Lions: Who are the favourites?
The British & Irish Lions mounted a second-half comeback to earn victory in the first Test against South Africa on Saturday and they can wrap up a series triumph if they follow that up with a win in the second Test. The first Test was a tight and tense affair with both sides enjoying dominant periods before the British & Irish Lions ultimately went on to secure a 22-17 victory in Cape Town.
South Africa, who are priced at 2.060* to win the second Test, were out of the blocks quickly and held a 12-3 lead at half time but ill-discipline and possibly a lack of pre-series gametime saw them lose that advantage in the second half.
The British & Irish Lions can be backed at 1.775* to make it successive wins. They will undoubtedly be looking for the kill and can wrap up a first series triumph on South African soil since 1997 if they come out on top again on Saturday.
How will South Africa respond?
The performance of both teams was very finely balanced for the most part in the first Test, barring penalties conceded, with South Africa being penalised on 14 occasions as opposed to the eight penalties picked up by the British & Irish Lions. Ultimately, that proved to be the difference as Dan Biggar and Owen Farrell gleefully accepted those opportunities to kick for goal.
The hosts are expected to come out full of intent and eager to take control of proceedings early on in the second Test but, much like the first Test, they could run out of steam. South Africa have played just one match since winning the World Cup in 2019, beating Georgia 40-9 ahead of this series, whereas the British & Irish Lions arrived for the first Test with six matches under their belt and raring to go.
With that in mind, backing South Africa to win the first half at 2.020* looks the best way to go. Warren Gatland has strength in depth on the bench and those replacements could play a key role in helping the tourists come out on top.
South Africa vs. British & Irish Lions: Where is the value?
The majority of the scoring action in the first Test came during the second half with a combined 24 points scored in contrast to 15 in the first half.
South Africa's lack of discipline allowed the British & Irish Lions to edge clear with the boot and with so much riding on the second Test, it could prove to be the second half when all the action happens again. Over 41.5 points in the match is available at 1.909*.