The Super Rugby action continues this weekend with two important matchups in Canberra and Sydney. On Friday night, the Brumbies host the Western Force. Meanwhile, the rivalry between the Waratahs and the Queensland Reds will face off from Stadium Australia on Saturday night.
Super Rugby Round 6 Betting Tips
ACT Brumbies vs Western Force
Fri, March 26 GIO Stadium, Canberra 7:45pm (AEDT)
Losing experienced backs Rob Kearney and Richard Kuhui to injury strips plenty of shrewd kicking, defensive nous and communication from the Western Force backline. Canberra is a hostile place to play and the Force may be stepping into a Brumbies’ ambush in this one.
Less cohesion out wide with those Force changes just points to Len Ikitau and Tom Banks causing all sorts of problems when they run for the Brumbies. Centre Tevita Kuridrani is returning to his former Canberra home as a Force player so he’s one visitor up for a big game.
The Brumbies will benefit from veteran James Slipper’s return at prop but the Canberra men must expect the Force to relentlessly pressure them there. The Brumbies sent an SOS to Waikato prop Sefo Kautai and he’s on the bench along with raw off-sider Fred Kauhea, another back-up prop. The Reds dismantled the Brumbies scrum over the final 20 minutes of their comeback win recently. The Force will be thinking the same after veteran Greg Holmes and Co earned two penalties off vaunted Reds’ scrum in the first half last round. You have to predict a strong, early lead by the Brumbies but pressure without points-power from the Force late in the game. Brumbies win this.
NSW Waratahs vs Queensland Reds
Sat, March 27 Stadium Australia, Sydney 7:45pm (AEDT)
In no match this season does hard history and a forecast differ so much. The Waratahs have belted the Reds on six straight visits to Sydney. Last year’s sloppy 45-12 collapse by the Reds at the SCG was a shock and it stung. The Reds were worked up about avenging last year’s final loss to the Brumbies when they visited Canberra for a great win and this is a revenge mission to Stadium Australia as well. Even with their 4-0 start, Reds skipper James O’Connor says the team is still chasing a complete performance. Rotating Wallabies No.8 Harry Wilson to the bench still means he’ll be second half clout behind in-form starter Seru Uru. The Reds can win big in this one. The Waratahs are definitely strengthened by the return of prop Angus Bell from injury but losing top backrowers Jack Dempsey and Lachie Swinton to injury is a major blow. It means the Waratahs can put less pressure on the Reds' lineout for one thing which is where the Queenslanders had huge problems in that SCG game. Dropping the one-dimensional Tepai Moeroa from inside centre had to happen but replacing him with an outside centre-winger in Izaia Perese causes its own problems. Look for the Reds to exploit short-pass plays that spear wingers Suliasi Vunivalu and Filipo Daugunu through in that uncertain defensive channel around Perese and Will Harrison. Jordan Petaia had a huge game against the Force and is striking top form so Waratahs beware.