It’s that time again to put our head on the chopping block with our weekend predictions.
It is that time of the week where we put our head on the chopping block with Planet Rugby’s weekend predictions.
There’s the matter of the final Bledisloe Cup clash of the year to address while in Europe the Champions Cup finally begins after the months of negotiations and in-fighting which have ended with a new trophy and format.
Also we’ll take a look at the possibilities for the ITM Cup semi-finals, leaving you plenty of options to make some money with Paddy Power over the weekend. Buckle up.
After the 12-12 draw and then the 51-20 thrashing dished out by the All Blacks in The Rugby Championship, what should we really expect at Suncorp? (Another draw for those that like lightning striking twice is 22/1)
The All Blacks though warmed up as the tournament progressed to clinch the title with a round to go.
Even losing in Johannesburg, only their second loss in three years, isn’t really enough to set the alarm bells ringing.
Brisbane has been good to the Wallabies in recent times however. After all the off-field damage from the Kurtley Beale saga a focused approach from Australia is expected, which makes bets like them leading at the break before New Zealand take the win at 11/2 appealing. Add into that thought an Australian try being the first score of the game at 6/1.
However this game is New Zealand’s to lose. A winning margin of 15-20 points feels right at 13/2, while you should look out for Julian Savea as the first try scorer at the same odds. A Savea hat-trick is 19/1. New Zealand by 15.
European Champions Cup
A new dawn on the continent! By reducing the number of teams from 24 to 20, Europe’s top competition has never been more elite. There’s a whole host of mouthwatering clashes awaiting us, but the action all starts at The Stoop.
Harlequins v Castres
The away form of 2013 French champions Castres has been so dire this season that it’s no surprise to see Harlequins listed as 1/9 favourites, with Castres down at 5/1.
Even though Quins form has been patchy they should win this one at a one-sided rate. The total final score being under 36 points is 2/1.
How Castres start is essential and with Rory Kockott and R