Vancouver 2017 Pool Predictions

After a mostly upset free finish to Las Vegas, the Vancouver pool’s are well-balanced. No third place team has a greater than 8% chance to win their pool. The tightest game for a quarter-final spot is in Pool D where Canada hopes a large home crowd can push them past Scotland.

Pool A

South Africa continues to amaze but is now without Justin Geduld. England is the only team to beat them this season and both teams will want to avoid crossing over with New Zealand in the quarters. Kenya is the team that could-be, but can’t win kickoffs. I was impressed by Chile and wouldn’t be surprised if they won a Challenge Trophy match Sunday.

Team Pool Win % Quarter-Final %
South Africa 83 % >99 %
England 16 % 86 %
Kenya <1 % 15 %
Chile <1 % <1 %


Pool B

Ravouvou and Mocenacagi are suspended one and three games respectively for Fiji but they should still win the pool. I like how Argentina has been playing and their win over New Zealand shows they have a shot against Fiji. Wales had a disappointing Las Vegas statistically. They have a very poor first half split and need to start strong if they want out of the pool. Leilua was exciting for Samoa but overall they lack the defensive prowess to contend with the top squads.

Team Pool Win % Quarter-Final %
Fiji 82 % 97 %
Argentina 13 % 65 %
Wales 3 % 25 %
Samoa 2 % 14 %


Pool C

USA versus Australia should be the tightest game of day one. Both teams feature some exciting offense while the the defense is a contrast between the aggressive Americans and the more conservative Aussies. If France gets hot on their kickoffs they could pull an upset. Japan continues to improve and a 2% chance for the quarters is their highest all season.

Team Pool Win % Quarter-Final %
USA 47 % 85 %
Australia 45 % 84 %
France 8 % 29 %
Japan <1 % 2 %


Pool D

The way NZ is improving I could see them winning the tournament, or at least beating the Boks sometime this season. Koroi is the real deal and leads a group of young players adding some much-needed dynamism. I’m struggling to understand Scotland recently. They started the series with some fearless play that highlighted great team speed. But recently they seem constrained by a need for structure. I hope Canada can work themselves into a quarter-final spot, just for the fans’ sake. Meanwhile Russia returned to their offensive struggles in Vegas. They are dead last in forcing contact failures and should get shut down by New Zealand’s and Scotland’s strong defenses.

Team Pool Win % Quarter-Final %
New Zealand 76 % 94 %
Scotland 15 % 62 %
Canada 8 % 40 %
Russia <1 % 4 %