SUPER RUGBY WEEK 16
Crusaders v Rebels
The Crusaders lost to the Chiefs last week 23-13 while the Rebels were soundly beaten by a resurrected Stormers team 57-31 at home. This has dropped the Crusaders to third on the overall ladder and second in the NZ Conference, while the Rebels season is over for now. The Crusaders will be looking to get their season back on track and try to cement a home quarter final, while the Rebels are playing for pride now and will want to bounce back after last weeks trouncing.
These two teams have played four times in the last four years with a 2-2 record. Surprisingly these games are always pretty close affairs, the two games the Crusaders have won have been by an average winning margin of 5 points with the highest winning margin being 6, while the rebels average winning margin against the crusaders is slightly higher 9.5 points.
The line this week has gone up a massive 21.5 points, I think the Crusaders will win but the Rebels will cover the line.
Waratahs v Hurricanes
Two teams with a similar playing style - attacking rugby. The Waratahs are coming off a solid win last week against the Sunwolves beating them 57-12 away from home, while the Hurricanes had a gritty come from behind win against the Blues at home 37-27.
Both teams will want this win badly, winning this will cement a playoffs spot, arguably the Hurricanes have more to play for with wanting to hold onto a Wildcard spot.
The Waratahs have won 6 of their last 7 games, only a loss to the Crusaders back in May has halted a longer streak. The Hurricanes alternatively have won 9 of their last 11, losing to the Sharks away from home and the Chiefs in a nail biter back in April.
These Waratahs have won 4 of 6 games against the Hurricanes and are somewhat of a bogey team for the Hurricanes. The Waratahs have won the last two games by 5 and 9 points respectively. An average of 55.5 points are scored when the two teams played and that number is a bit higher in the last 3 years. Expect a high scoring game if the weather is good with a fair few tries by either side.
I like the Waratahs in what I expect to be a close game, I think at home they'll be hard to beat.
RESULTS STAKES ROI Final