Super Rugby – Round 3, Part 1
Before we plunge balls deep into the previews for this Friday’s games, let’s take a moment to reflect on something which has nothing to do with rugby but is FiretrUCKING awesome… Ireland beating England in the Cricket World Cup. Maverick thumbs up, specifically to Kevin O’ Brien, who smashed the fastest World Cup century off just 50 balls.
Quality boys, sheer quality.
Back to the rugga and specifically this week’s Supe Rugby.
The Crusaders play only their second game of the season on Friday in what promises to be an emotional affair against the impressive Waratahs in Nelson. The other game on Friday is the ever-improving Lions against the mostly unpredictable Blues at Coca-Cola Park.
Crusaders vs Waratahs
The Waratahs are currently at the top of their conference and indeed the overall log having massively dominated their opponents in the last 2 weeks. This week however, they play the Crusaders and are without Berrick Barnes dude to injury. The big question is how will replacement Daniel Halangahu fare against the king of flyhalves Daniel Carter.
The Crusaders were beaten in the first week by a determined Blues team and will be itching to get their season back on track after missing last week. They are not playing in Christchurch, which may benefit the Tahs but will be extremely amped for this game and keen to give the their fans and the people of Christchurch something to smile about once again.
Venue: Trafalgar Park, Nelson
Prediction: Saders by 3-7
Lions vs Blues
The Blues were beaten by the Sharks last week in humid slippery conditions which did not suit the Blues style of rugby. This week, they travel to the Highveld and although they will enjoy the dry conditions, may well struggle with the altitude (fingers crossed).
The Lions have been much better so far then they have been in the last 2 seasons of Super Rugby. They have however had the misfortune of having to play last year’s finalists in their first 2 games and are to date, still winless in their last 16 games. Young Elton Jantjies has been poor with his kicking and the rest of the team will be hoping he regains the fine kicking form (86% success rate) he showed in last year’s Currie Cup.
the Lions play has fans across the country coming out of the woodwork and they seem genuinely
excited with what they have seen so far.
The Blues historically have man-handled the Lions team home and away and will fancy their chances once again. The Lions have indeed shown they are different prospect this year but need a win to get that now pretty large monkey off their backs.
Venue: Coca-Cola Park, Johannesburg
Prediction: Lions by the proverbial ball hair