Thu, Apr 19, 8:13am by Staff Writer
Round 10 of Super Rugby is headlined by a number of inter-conference match ups, including the match of the round on Friday night when the New South Wales Waratahs host the Lions at Allianz Stadium.
Elsewhere, the Chiefs visit Queensland to take on the Reds, while the Rebels begin their South African tour with a trip to Pretoria to face the Bulls.
Waratahs versus Lions
Friday, 20 April 2018 at 7.45pm AEST at Allianz Stadium, Sydney
The Waratahs will be looking for their fifth consecutive win when they host the Lions on Friday night in Sydney.
The Tahs have been impressive in recent weeks, notching up big scores against their rivals in the Australia conference, beaten all four of those teams in the past month.
They will start this match as $1.86 favourites, with the visiting Lions priced at $1.95.
The Lions are coming off a bye and begin this four-match tour of Australia and New Zealand as runaway leaders of the South African conference after only eight matches.
They hold an 11-point lead over the second placed Bulls, but the gulf in class between the two sides is enormous.
This match may well be a finals preview, with the Lions reaching the final of Super Rugby in 2016 and 2017 but unable to taste victory. Last season was a poor one from the Waratahs, but with a favourable fixture remaining, they will fancy themselves to top the Australian conference.
The last time the Lions visited Sydney they were thumped 41-13 in 2014. A lot has changed since then and the Lions, who were once the cellar dwellers of South African rugby are now the benchmark.
There is little to separate the two teams, with the Lions possessing the stronger forward pack and the Tahs the stronger backline.
In what is essentially a pick ‘em game, we are going to side with the home team to make it five wins on the bounce.
It should be a close one, so we are taking the Tahs 1-12 in the margin market.
Best bet- Waratahs Big Win Little Win 1-12 at $3
Sharks versus Stormers
Sunday, 22 April 2018 at 1.15am AEST at Kings Park, Durban
The Sharks and Stormers are the two most unpredictable teams in Super Rugby, so when the two teams clash for the first time in 2018, anything is possible.
Both sides will be desperate to win this match as they already trail the Lions by double digits in the standings.
The Sharks have been installed as narrow $1.70 favourites, with the Stormers priced at $2.15.
The Sharks had a tremendous tour of New Zealand, beating the Blues before losing to the Hurricanes in the 85th minute.
They followed those performances with a 40-10 loss against the Blues last weekend, which was incredibly disappointing.
The Stormers have won three matches all season and are coming into this match off a bye.
The Sharks have won four of the past five matches between these two sides and last lost to the Stormers in Durban in 2014.
Despite the statistics favouring the Sharks, there is better value in taking the Stormers, who will know they need to win this match if they are any chance of chasing down the Lions.
Best bet- Stormers to win at $2.15
Brumbies versus Jaguares
Sunday, 22 April 2018 at 4.05pm AEST at GIO Stadium, Canberra
The Jaguares sprung one of the upsets of the season when they beat the Rebels in Melbourne last Saturday. A flurry of second half tries ensured victory for the visitors who hung on for a 25-22 victory.
They now face a Brumbies team who lost in Otago to the Highlanders 43-17, with the hosts piling on the points late in the contest.
The Brumbies are $1.50 favourites for this match, with the Argentinians $2.60 underdogs.
The Jaguares are only two points away from being in second position in the South African conference and have won just as many games as all of the teams in that conference except the Lions.
They have enjoyed playing against teams from the Australian conference, beating both the Rebels and Waratahs and losing narrowly to the Reds.
Last season the Jaguares swept their Australian tour beating the Rebels and Waratahs, so it is not out of the question for them to do the same on Sunday afternoon.
The Brumbies are vulnerable at the moment and don’t look to have any game breakers across the park. Their defence has left a lot to be desired at times and the physicality of the Jaguares should really trouble the team from Canberra on Sunday.
We are tipping the upset and the Jaguares to make it two from two in Australia.
Best bet- Jaguares Big Win Little Win 1-12 at $3.75
Super Rugby Round 10 Odds – Sportsbet
Blues $3.30 v Highlanders $1.33
Waratahs $1.86 v Lions $1.95
Crusaders $1.005 v Sunwolves $34
Reds $5.50 v Chiefs $1.15
Bulls $1.27 v Rebels $3.80
Sharks $1.70 v Stormers $2.15
Brumbies $1.50 v Jaguares $2.60
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