Thu, Mar 30, 9:30am by Staff Writer
The action in Super Rugby is hotting up as the best teams in the competition start to flex their muscles. This weekend sees two of the high flying Kiwi sides make the trip to Aussie shores to take on the Reds and Waratahs. The Hurricanes and Crusaders look set to be contending for the crown come the end of the season.
Blues v Force, Saturday April 1, 3:15pm AEDT, Eden Park
While speculation continues to grow regarding which Australian side, if any, will be cut from a format change. The Western Force amon others need to start answering their critics on the field. This weekend they travel to Auckland to take on the Blues and round out their two match New Zealand tour. Having beaten comprehensively beaten by the Crusaders, hopes are not high for the Force as they stand at $8.00 with William Hill. While the Blues, fresh from their destruction of the Bulls last week, are priced at $1.08. It is these matches that the Blues must win if they are to have any hope of reaching the Finals. Their form this year suggests that this could be a routine victory for the home side.
Bet of the Match: Blues to Win by 1-12 points at $3.40
Reds v Hurricanes, Saturday April 1, 7:45pm AEDT, Suncorp Stadium
The Reds return home to Brisbane in Round Six to host the Hurricanes. Many factors are against the Reds in this match up, not least the fact they have travelled around the world in the last two weeks while the Hurricanes are fresh off the bye. Even before any of that is taken into account though the Hurricanes would arguably already be justified their price of $1.13 with William Hill. With much of their champion squad still intact the Hurricanes look as dangerous as ever in this competition, while the Reds recruited heavily in the off season and have had nothing to show for it. They stand at $6.00 and need to start backing up the names in their squad with performances on the pitch.
Bet of the Match: Hurricanes to Win by 1-12 points at $3.00
Waratahs v Crusaders, Sunday April 2, 4:05pm AEDT, Allianz Stadium
Sunday afternoon rugby in Sydney gets its first airing of the season this weekend as the Waratahs take on the Crusaders looking to build upon their second half comeback against the Rebels. That revival was reminiscent of the miraculous recoveries that the Crusaders have managed so far this year. With the two comeback kings lining up against each other it will be an enthralling contest. The Crusaders have won five out of five and will be high on confidence as they make the trip across the Tasman and stand at $1.35 with William Hill. Lingering worries over the fitness of Bernard Foley mean the Waratahs are priced at $3.15 after he impressed so much on his return. Concussion symptoms, however, may well rule him out this clash.
Bet of the Match: Crusaders to Win by 1-12 points at $2.85
Friday 31 March
Highlanders $1.04 v Rebels $11
Saturday 1 April
Blues $1.08 v Force $8
Chiefs $1.06 v Bulls $9
Reds $6 v Hurricanes $1.13
Stormers $1.25 v Cheetahs $4
Lions $1.28 v Sharks $3.70
Sunday 2 April
Waratahs $3.20 v Crusaders $1.35
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