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Super Rugga Watch 2018 – Round 8

Believe it or not but we’ve reached the halfway stage of this year’s Vodacom Super Rugby competition and the landscape still keeps changing on the overall standings.

Last week was not the best but also not the worst from a results point of view as we finished with 3/6 correct calls.

We do not expect too many surprises this week so let’s get down to business.

Friday 6 April 2018 – Hurricanes v Cell C Sharks, McLean Park – 09h35*

After all the hype of last week’s away win over the Blues, we expect the Cell C Sharks to be humbled by current tournament favourites, the Hurricanes. This will be the fourth week away from home for the Durbanites and as per the norm; they probably have one foot on the plane home already. However we believe Coach Robert du Preez and co will be keen to leave New Zealand with a good showing following their unexpected mauling of the Blues. The Canes have only had one loss this season, which came against the Vodacom Bulls in their opening round and have since tasted victory wherever they have been and this weekend should not be any different for them either. To be honest we believe the Sharks will have the tables turned on them at McLean Park and if we are right it won’t be a nice sight for their supporters.

PREDICTION: Hurricanes by 21

Sat 7 April 2018 – Sunwolves v Waratahs, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium – 07h15*

The Sunwolves are welcoming the Waratahs to Japan after having a bye last week and will want to bounce back to the form they showed in South Africa and against the Brumbies earlier in the season. The Waratahs are coming off a hard fought victory over local rivals the Brumbies and are looking to maintain form without Israel Folau after injuring his hamstring in Canberra. If the men from the home of the Rising Sun do pitch up it should be a good contest but we believe the Tahs should win this comfortably.

PREDICTION: Waratahs by 15

Saturday 7 April 2018 – Chiefs v Blues, FMG Stadium – 09h35*

The Chiefs have come to some form of late and will want to keep building on it when they welcome the beleaguered Blues to Hamilton this week in the return fixture between these two sides. In their previous encounter in Auckland the Chiefs walked away with a 6-point victory. The Blues have been hot and cold this season and if the formbook is anything to go by then it’s going to be another long day at the office for Coach Tana Umaga and co.

PREDICTION: Chiefs by 10

Saturday 7 April 2018 – Brumbies v Reds, GIO Stadium – 11h45*

What would a weekend without an Australian derby be? We can think of many “superlatives” here. However, the Brumbies and Reds have the potential to put up a good showing if they bring their respective games to the party this Saturday, which we saw them do against the Sharks and Bulls earlier this season in the second return fixture of the week. Having to make a prediction on this game however won’t be that easy, so we are going to stick with the home side here…just because it’s too close to call.

PREDICTION: Brumbies by 6

Sat 7 April 2018 – Emirates Lions v DHL Stormers, Emirates Airline Park – 17h15*

Game of the weekend has to be the battle at Emirates Airline Park this weekend when the Emirates Lions host the DHL Stormers. Both teams are smarting losses from the Crusaders and Bulls respectively and are desperate to get back to winning ways. More so would be the Lions who have been struggling of late to get to the form they have had over the past two seasons. Their fans are crying out for a good performance and with possible returns this weekend of Ross Cronje, Ruan Combrinck and Captain Warren Whiteley, it might just be what they are looking for at this stage of the tournament. The Capetonians are on the road for the second week running and are also looking to bounce back from their loss in Pretoria, with Jo’burg possibly being a tougher prospect. Key battles will be the order of the day once again with many of these two teams’ form players been invited to the second Springbok alignment camp next week in Vanderbijlpark. With teams still to be announced we do however believe the Lions will have too much for the Stormers to combat but do think it will be close with both teams searching for form.

PREDICTION: Emirates Lions by 7

Saturday 7 April 2018 – Jaguares v Crusaders, José Amalfitani Stadium – 23h40*

The Jaguares return from their break and welcome the Crusaders fresh from South Africa where they edged out the Lions for a nail biting win. The Jags will need to come out the blocks fast if they want to stand any chance against the 8-time Super Rugby Champions, who themselves have been off form of late. The travel factor might affect the men from Christchurch but they should be able to close the game off. If you are willing to stay up for this match it should be worth it…if not then please don’t hold it against us.

PREDICTION: Crusaders by 13

* – denotes kick-off South Africa Time

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