Bookies lose faith in Springboks

Cape Town - The Springboks have plummetted down the list of favourites to lift this year's Webb Ellis Cup, according to bookmakers.

According to local bookies Sportingbet, after their opening shock loss to Japan in Brighton on Saturday, the Boks are now on offer at 9/1 to add a third World Cup title to their resumé.

Heyneke Meyer's men were, pre-tournament, among the favourites to emerge victorious.

New Zealand, who open their World Cup defence against Argentina at 17:45 on Sunday, remain 21/20 favourites, followed by England (21/5), Australia (7/1) and Ireland (8/1).

England beat Fiji 35-11 in the tournament opener at Twickenham last Friday, while Ireland accounted for Canada 50-7 on Saturday.

Australia will play their first match against Fiji on Wednesday.

Despite their loss the Springboks are still favourites (1/3) to top Pool B and progress to the quarter-finals where, should they finish first, they will face the runners-up in Pool A's 'Group of Death'.

The Springboks' next match is against Samoa next Saturday at Villa Park at 17:45 SA time.

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