Planet Rugby

This weekend's predictions!

01st August 2014 08:18

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Waratahs captain Michael Hooper at Super Rugby final photo session

Narrow win: Waratahs

It's that time of week where we put our heads on the chopping block with Planet Rugby's weekend predictions.

So after nineteen rounds and four play-off games, we're down to just two teams in Super Rugby as the Waratahs and Crusaders contest the final.

It is an incredibly difficult one to call in Sydney as regular-season winners and form team of the campaign, the 'Tahs, take on the outfit from Christchurch who have beaten them twice before at this stage in 2005 and 2008. However, both of those results took place in Crusader country.

Now much has been made of the 'Tahs' decision to move the game to ANZ as many question the logic of relinquishing their home field advantage. Sure, the financial gain of a larger venue proved instrumental but should they lose, expect it to be included in Monday morning's post-mortem.

Speaking of financial gains, let us now attempt to find you some profit with our detailed look at the rugby betting on offer from Paddy Power.

Super Rugby Final

Waratahs v Crusaders

It is as you were in terms of line-ups this weekend as the Waratahs and Crusaders roll out exactly the same XVs that defeated the Brumbies and Sharks in their respective semi-final. It's of little surprise really as both were impressive eight days ago along with super sub Will Skelton, who one would expect to emerge with no more than 55 minutes played in Sydney.

The Waratahs scored three tries to the Crusaders' five last weekend but it has been the Sydneysiders leading the way this season on a total of 58, which is 12 more than their visitors. Israel Folau and Kurtley Beale have contributed 20 of those and the former at 8/5 anytime is worth a go, especially after his quiet showing last week. We expect a response.

Nemani Nadolo is another to catch the eye at 15/8 and might well have been first try scorer last week had the final defender done a better job holding Kieran Read. We are also eager to have a play on him at 8/1 for first try-scorer alongside Folau claiming his team's first try at 4/1, which avoids a guaranteed loss before a ball has even been kicked at ANZ Stadium.

Unlike last week, we don't see one team running away with this and with the fact both are free scorers - the 'Tahs having posted 507 while the Crusaders have 483 - a memorable final could be on the cards. Over 44.5 points on the margin is tempting, but with it being such a special occasion let's go for 51 points or more at 2/1 on offer from Paddy Power.

Superbru Super Rugby predictions

Waratahs vs Crusaders: Waratahs by 3!

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