The 2016 Super Rugby season is about to begin with a massive year expected with the inclusion of three more teams to the competition. We will be taking a look at the season ahead and offering our best bets for the Super Rugby futures markets, including a Super Rugby Ladder Prediction before we give our weekly rugby betting tips all season long!
It is next to impossible to predict how the ladder will stand at the end of the regular season and it is even harder this season with the addition of three new teams with a lot of mystery surrounding them.
A team’s chance of reaching the finals can be altered due to an injury and the ladder predicted below will be based on each team being able to remain healthy whilst exceeding or going below expectations.
The ladder above is how we believe the sides will finish at the end of the regular season. It is important to keep in mind two teams from the Australasian group and two teams from the South African group will be fixed into the top four spots. This means that if there is three teams in the Australasian group with higher competition points than sides in the South African group the lowest of the three in the Australiasian group will be in 5th position despite having more competition points than the two South African teams.
We are backing the Australian side the Brumbies coached by Stephen Larkham to finish the regular season in top spot. The side had a poor finish last year and missed big opportunities to pick up wins against other top teams. They will have learned from their mistakes whilst they also have arguably the best player in the world at the moment David Pocock. The side has a long list of internationals they should earn a lot of four try bonus points this season, which will contribute to them finishing the season in first place.
New Zealand Conference
Last year the Hurricanes finally lived up to their expectations and lost just two regular season matches to finish the regular season as minor premiers. However, the side lost in a low scoring grand final to the Highlanders. The fire in the belly to go one step further will be burning for the Hurricanes and this should push them over the line in a lot of close matches against conference rivals. The team is again filled with New Zealand internationals with a lot of experience and confidence coming off a Rugby World Cup victory. The Hurricanes will come out victorious in the most competitive conference in the 2016 Super Rugby season.
As stated above I believe the Brumbies will take out the minor premiership for the 2016 Super Rugby season. Their biggest opponent in the Australian conference will be from the 2014 champions the Waratahs. However, there has been a few changes with the New South Wales side including a new coach as Michael Cheika will now focus solely on his Wallabies job. This gives the Brumbies a massive edge and it will see the favourites claim top spot.
South African Conference 1
The Stormers are massive favourites and for good reason with their closest rivals the Bulls losing flyhalf Handre Pollard being ruled out for the entire season after tearing his cruciate knee ligaments. It is a massive blow for the Bulls side that relies heavily on the playmaking ability and goal kicking of Pollard and will need to find that from a player below his standard.
The Stormers finished on the top of the South African conference last season, just edging out the Lions. It should be a similar scenario this season with the Stormers claiming top spot.
South African Conference 2
The new Argentinian side are the favourites with the bookmakers to earn top spot of the second South African Conference. However, despite the side having a lot of international players from their country I don’t believe a team entering the hardest rugby club competition can make an immediate impact. The side should struggle on the road with a lot of their matches taking place in South Africa against strong home teams.
Last year the Lions were able to shock a lot of experts and finish in second place of the South African conference, which saw them narrowly miss out on a finals berth. However, we don’t expect the side to have the same impact. The Sharks were hindered by injury last season and with a fully fit side they will be able to find their way to the top of their conference.
2016 Super Rugby Grand Final winner
If my prediction is correct that the Brumbies will finish the 2016 Super Rugby regular season in first place then they will get home advantage throughout the entire finals series, which is even more important this year with each match being an elimination final with no team having the benefit of a bye week. The Brumbies also have the benefit of facing the side with the lowest seed heading into the Grand Final. I believe they are worth backing at this stage with their price likely to shorten with their success throughout the season.
As stated above, the Jaguares are in their inaugural season of the Super Rugby competition. They have been given high expectations and it will be hard for them to live up to them considering they haven’t experienced what it will take to compete in the hardest club competition in the world. It should be a good idea to lay the Jaguares with Betfair as their odds should blow out as their season worsens.
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Take note: Any of the tips in this article are simply the author’s opinion, so bet at your own risk and always gamble responsibly. Also be sure to check out the Before You Bet Twitter Page for all our thoughts in the lead up to bets! Happy punting!
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