We take a look at 4 of the Super Rugby matches taking place on Saturday and suggest a bet in each game.
Heading into the Week 4 of Super Rugby, the Crusaders have stamped their authority on the Tournament and are now into 19/20 favourites to win the cup – click here for outright and conference betting
Crusaders v Chiefs – click here to bet
The Crusaders have won all 3 of their opening matches, winning 2 New Zealand derbies and then beating the Reds in Brisbane by 10 points last week. The result was enough to see Red backers get up on the handicap, but this will not bother this Crusaders team who look like they are going to be very hard to beat this season. Their only other home game was a 38-22 win over the Hurricanes.
The Chiefs were rocked last week when despite starting 27 point favourites they were beaten by the Sunwolves at home. It was a first ever victory on New Zealand soil for the Sunwolves and it means the Chiefs have lost all 3 of their matches to date, including home games against the Brumbies and the Highlanders.
The Chiefs have a fairly decent record in Christchurch and they won 3 in a row from 2014 to 2016 but have lost the last 2 they have played here, both by margins of 14 points or more,
Crusaders -14.5 at 9/10
Chiefs +14.5 at 9/10
Suggested bet: Handicap, Crusaders (-14.5) at 9/10
The Crusaders haven’t named what I would consider a full strength team, but the Chiefs have looked awful and I can’t see past a comfortable home victory here.
Blues v Sunwolves – click here to bet
Much was expected from the Blues at the start of the season, but they continue to disappoint and after a promising narrow loss to the Crusaders at home in their first start, they were well beaten by the Sharks in Durban and going down 23-19 away to the Jaguares last weekend. They face a Sunwolves side which got absolutely hammered at home by the Sharks in /week 1, but then pushed the Waratahs close in Tokyo in Week 2 and came out and stunned the Chiefs 30-15 last week, a game in which they started close to 30 point underdogs.
These sides have met twice in Super Rugby both in Tokyo with Sunwolves winning one and the Blues winning the other.
Blues -14.5 at 9/10
Sunwolves +14.5 at 9/10
Suggested bet: Handicap, Blues (-14.5) at 9/10
As good as the Sunwolves were last week against the Chiefs, it must be said the Chiefs were very poor and if the Blues could reproduce the sort of form that saw them push the Crusaders close, they really should win this with plenty of room to spare.
Waratahs v Reds – click here to bet
The Waratahs had a bye in Week 3 and both of their opening matches were decided by just a few points. They came from behind to beat the Hurricanes 20-19 in Sydney but they then were massive favourites against the Sunwolves away, but only scraped in by a single point in a high scoring encounter. The Reds opening two fixtures have been tough ones against New Zealand opposition and they pushed the Highlanders close on the road going down by 5 points before playing their first home match and losing by 10 points to the Crusaders, a game where they started 14.5 point underdogs.
The Waratahs have dominated this fixture in recent seasons winning a 4 in a row and all 4 of those victories have come by margins of 13 points or more.
Waratahs -8.5 at 9/10
Reds +8.5 at 9/10
Suggested bet: Handicap, Waratahs (-8.5) at 9/10
I was very impressed with the Waratahs in the opening week and while the Reds have performed above my expectations, I think home ground advantage will see the Waratahs through to a double digit win.
Bulls v Sharks – click here to bet
The big South African Derby of the weekend sees the Bulls at home to the Sharks.
The Bulls have played 3 matches, winning two games against South African opposition and losing away to the Jaguares. Their home win was a 37 point demolishing of the Stormers in Week 1 and last week they powered past the Lions in Johannesburg, winning 30-12. The Sharks opened their campaign with a comfortable victory over the Sunwolves away, followed by a convincing win over the Blues at home and they were strongly fancied to put the Stormers away when the sides met in Durban last week, things never went according to the script though and it was the Stormers who won the match 16-11 in humid conditions.
The last 6 matches at Loftus between the Bulls and the Sharks have seen the Bulls win 5 with 1 game drawn. Last season the Bulls won a high scoring encounter 39-33.
Bulls -4.5 at 9/10
Sharks +4.5 at 9/10
Suggested bet: Handicap, Bulls (-4.5) at 9/10
I am a little bit surprised to be getting a handicap of (-4.5) on the Bulls after the way they have demolished South African opposition in the Stormers and the Lions and I am happy to take that as my bet of the week.
Note: Prices correct at the time of posting but are subject to change