Super Rugby 2013 Preview and Predictions – Round 12, Part 1
Awwww yis! 7 out of 7 bitchessss!
A glorious weekend of rugby picks, magical really. My first 100% of the season. Sheesh that took a while to get right and no mistake. Well done to the Stormers for picking up a win overseas and besides playing some average rugga at times, being the only side to win away from home this past week. The Brumbies face smashed the Force and the Cheetahs dominated the Kings but otherwise the other games all were relatively close affairs. Especially the 4 point come from behind win by the somewhat shell-shocked Crusaders.
The Sharks looked like they were on the road to a hammering trailing 24-0 after less than 20mins but came back incredibly well against the Chiefs to score a 4 try bonus point. They could well have secured another point for losing within 7 were it not for a brain fart of epic proportions from Keegan Daniel who gave away a penalty after the hooter, in the Sharks 22. Well played Keegan. Gosh!
Both the Sharks and Stormers face must win situations this weekend if they are to keep up with the Bulls. The Sharks appear to have the easier game against the out of sorts Highlanders, while the Stormers face a trickier situash against an in-form Blues side. Both should be quality match-ups, especially if the Sharks can continue to up their attacking game and the Stormers finally figure out how to catch a lineout ball. So without further a do, let’s hit this, it’s a public holiday after all (Happy May Day btw) and the beach is calling and by ‘beach’, I mean the beer in the fridge.
Super Rugby, round 12 Friday 3rd May 2013
Blues vs Stormers
Word on the street in Albany is that half of the team have been floored by a colds and flu. Coach Sir John will be hoping it is not the man flu. Rene Ranger is in hospital with an infection and fullback Charles Piutau and flank Steven Luatua are both man down. The Blues came close against the Reds last week but were denied by some excellent defense, good thing this week should be much easier to breach the defensive line… oh wait, no it won’t.
The Stormers looked alright in patches last week but fairly poor in others. They had a few soft moments on defense and their lineout woes continued. I wonder when coach Coetzee will realise that as good as Deon Fourie is in the loose, he is just as SHITake at lineout throwing. Throw the ball to Andries Bekker buddy, he is the tallest oke on the field, it’s not brain surgery. The Stormers welcome back Elton Jantjies and Eben massive guns Etzebeth from injury and both will start off the bench. This will be attack vs defense, flair vs structure and blue vs er.. blue with stripes. Tricksy to call but I reckon the Stormers should be able to close them out for a second win overseas.
Venue: North Harbour Stadium, Albany
Kick-Off: Fri, 9:35am (SA Time)
Blues vs Stormers Prediction: Stormers by less than 7
Rebels vs Chiefs
If it wasn’t for a couple of scrum fails in the last 10 mins last Sunday, the Rebels may well have secured a famous second victory over the Crusaders and destroyed my SuperBru round. They were impressive, especially early on, it must be said and James Bieber O’Connor had a superb game, setting up and scoring one of his team’s 3 tries. Scott Higginbotham scored a try of his own and is showing some fine form heading into the B&I Lions tour. Returning to training this week and more than likely getting a shot off the bench is Kurtley ex-boozer Beale. Now we will finally get to see how well he plays when he is not hung over.
The Chiefs came out firing both barrels loaded last week and streaked ahead early on against the Sharks and besides allowing them back into the game still showed enough composure to seal the game and deny them a bonus point at the death. Centre Richard Kahui is out with yet another shoulder injury and may well be out for the next couple of months, which sucks the big one for the Chiefs and All Blacks. Chiefs start as favourites and rightly so but the current form of the Rebels could mean a close situash, especially in Melbourne.
Venue: AAMI Park, Melbourne
Rebels vs Chiefs Prediction: Chiefs by 5-12
Highlanders vs Sharks
The Highlanders have yet to win a game which is outrageous, especially if you look at their team sheet and the sheer odds on them finally winning one. Surely they are due to win one at some stage, surely? Surely, I say! Bringing up his century of Super Rugby games when he runs out on Friday is ex-Crusader, Brad Thorn. Slow clap. Well done, sir. The Highlanders would love to win one for the old dog but it will be a very tough task against the Sharks, especially with injuries to Kade Poki, Nasi Manu and Buxton Popoali’i.
The Sharks have lost the snappy service of Cobus Reinach but will be glad Frans donkey boot Steyn has been cleared to play after being cited earlier in the week. Newbie No. 8, Lubabalo ‘Tera’ Mtembu had a cracker last week and scored a fine try on debut and is one to watch for the rest of the season. Pat I use Clear for Men had a better game and his kicking accuracy is around 90%. Not too shabby. If the Sharks start like they did last week they may well find a rejuvenated and inspired Landers side, so let’s hope they get their SHITake sorted and quickly.
Venue: Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Kick-Off: Sat, 9:35am
Highlanders vs Sharks Prediction: Sharks by less than 7