The Super Rugby season is in full swing and now that we have had a few weeks to feel out the teams, we'll be getting into our weekly preview and betting tips. This season, we have brought on an expert in the form of Jim Tucker! Catch his preview and betting tips for both games in Round 4 of the Super Rugby season and follow him on Twitter here.
Super Rugby Preview Round 4 Betting Tips
Western Force vs Melbourne Rebels
Fri, March 12 8:45pm (AEDT)
Sometimes you have to read beyond the bare stats and listen to lawyer Dennis Denuto’s advice from the movie classic, The Castle...”It’s the vibe.” That’s this match in a nutshell.
The Rebels have come oh-so-close to upsetting the Reds and Brumbies by playing no-frills, disruptive rugby and kicking their penalty goals. That’s why the bookies have installed them favourites.
The Melbourne-based side are on the road for a third straight game and are feeling nothing is quite rolling their way.
Compare that to the drought-busters at the Western Force. The emotion to their 20-16 win over the NSW Waratahs last weekend was superb.
They want to bring that success back to HBF Park in Perth. This is a “win” game for them. They are getting better and better because new combinations are bedding down like the key Tomas Cubelli-Jake McIntyre-Richard Kahui axis at halfback-No.10-inside centre. Up front, forwards Fergus Lee-Warner, Kane Koteka and Brynard Stander are high workrate guys. If you are looking for a first tryscorer, neat-stepping winger Byron Ralston (Force) will give you a chance.
The Rebels won 25-20 and 34-30 in two tight clashes between the clubs last year. The Force are much fitter and have a better team this year, including much better impact off the bench. The sports bookies have got this one wrong...take the odds on the Force and win.
Queensland Reds vs ACT Brumbies
Sat, March 13 7:45pm (AEDT)
Stepping off the plane in Canberra is like entering the Bermuda Triangle for the Queensland Reds and don’t let anyone try to tell you otherwise. You pick the Brumbies every time in this fixture at GIO Stadium unless there’s a compelling reason not to. John Eales, Tim Horan...those two rugby greats never won a Super Rugby game in Canberra. Overall, the Brumbies have won 18 of the 21 times these two teams have met in Canberra.
The Reds haven’t won in the national capital since 2014 but they got oh-so-close on three visits in the COVID craziness of 2020. The losses were 27-24, 22-20 and 28-23 (in the Super Rugby AU final).
The Reds lost four lineouts in the final and that is a big area where the Brumbies win advantage because it layers on top of the rolling maul tries they hurt the Reds with as well.
The return from suspension of lock Lukhan Salakaia-Loto stiffens the Reds’ lineout and hitting power.
Not sure we like Hunter Paisami and Jordan Petaia as a centre pairing when both are specialist outside centres. Paisami’s passing from inside centre may put a stutter in the Reds’ attack but he’s a demon defender who rattles every time he crash tackles someone.
Melbourne Storm code-hopper Suliasi Vunivalu will be a gun rugby winger but even Israel Folau was exposed in his early games in a new code. Look for the Brumbies to exploit his hesitant positional play and run blindside to his wing to lure him off the sideline in defence. That’s why we like Brumbies fullback Tom Banks piercing out wide to be first tryscorer unless it's a Folau Faingaa rolling maul dot-down.
Old bull James O’Connor vs young stud Noah Lolesio...a great match-up.
Big Reds’ defence will keep this tight but it's a Brumbies win.