We are back to domestic action this weekend and after a successful round of games in the European Rugby Champions Cup teams will be looking at kicking on. Here are my predictions.
First here is a link to my review of the round 4 action.
How were your predictions for round 4?
6 from 6, it was a good way to head into the European competitions.
Northampton Saints v Gloucester Rugby
Saints had a rough start to the Premiership season with only one win from four. However the European Rugby Champions Cup has been the trigger they needed to click. Two wins and better performances are a sign that things are on the up for last years table toppers. Gloucester have been inconsistent with two wins and two losses. The wins have been against teams that are destined to be in the relegation battle. So I’m seeing a home win but not by a big margin.
Northampton Saints by 5
Sale Sharks v Newcastle Falcons
Sale have got their home form on song with two win but the two losses on the road have held them back. Falcons have just been poor and whilst a big win in the Challenge cup will be good for confidence it was against Russian opposition. So this should be a comfortable home with and Cipriani will be looking to start to state his case to Eddie Jones.
Sale Sharks by 10
Exeter Chiefs v Harlequins
This is one of the clashes of the round. Here we have two of the form sides this season. Exeter did stumble in their first Champions Cup game but were all back on form for the home game. Quins carried their good early season form into the Challenge Cup and are one of the favourites for that competition. Chiefs players have said in the past that Quins play a style that suits them and at home I’m expecting them to win.
Exeter Chiefs by 7
Saracens v Worcester Warriors
Warriors have had a great start for them with their two wins in the Aviva Premiership and another in the Challenge Cup. Saracens though are the form team in Europe and will be looking for a TBP win with this one. I expect that they will rest a couple of players but will still have far too much for the Premiership new comers.
Saracens by 15
London Irish v Wasps
Irish are another team that has had a tough start to the season. This is at least partially down to a new coaching setup and squad with some players still arriving. This week they host the team that has just demolished the European Rugby Champions Cup holders. Wasps are a side that likes to play a home but over the last two weeks pulled off two impressive wins bot home and away. So I think this will be their first Premiership away win of the season.
Wasps by 5
Leicester Tigers v Bath
Tigers have surprised everybody with how well they have started the season and carried that through to the European Rugby Champions Cup. We are really seeing the impact of Aaron Mauger joining in the off season. Bath have had an up and down season as they come down off the highs of last season, reintegrate their world cup stars and deal with the Burgess saga. They did pick up a good win last weekend though and the #RugbyChat participants think that they will win with 68% of the vote. I’m going against popular opinion and think that Tigers will continue their fine form at home with a win.
Leicester Tigers by 7
Let me know your predictions below.