It’s amazing to think that the Premiership sides have not played at top flight competitive game since the beginning of January. Sure the Premiership Cup as been going on but that’s not top flight rugby. So how will teams have coped with having a midseason break? It’s going to be new to all the coaching staff. Also the teams will be missing internationals to the 6 Nations to add another variable.
Here is my video with my Gallagher Premiership Round 13 Predictions:
Gloucester Rugby v Exeter Chiefs – Exeter Chiefs by 7
These sides have already met 3 times this season after they were paired the European Rugby Champions Cup. Gloucester are one of the least impacted by England call ups and so should be targeting this window of games. They did go into the break with some poor form having lost their 2 games over the festive holidays.
Exeter have also been a bit up and down “recently” (yup in quotes as it was 6 weeks ago). However they are top of the table for a reason and so it’s hard not to back them in just about every game.
Bristol v Wasps – Bristol by 5
Bristol have shown that they are a real handful at home. Their only losses have been to Saints and Exeter by 5 and 2 points. So this is going to be a tough old game for Wasps. Also Wasps are in a bit of turmoil. Young came out recently to say that he’s in a dark space and this is the hardest year at the club. Having only won 2 of their last 7 games in the premiership it has been a bad time for them.
Northampton Saints v Sale Sharks – Northampton Saints by 3
In Saints and Sharks we have 2 sides that have improved as the season has gone on. Sharks are 4 wins and a draw in their last 5 Premiership games. Saints have also managed to string a couple of wins and performances together. They aren’t a Sales level yet but I think that home advantage could prove decisive as Sale have still only won once away all season.
Bath v Newcastle Falcons – Bath by 3
Falcons will be desperate for a win here and we are going to see what Dean Richards has managed to do in this break. Bath on the other hand had put a few results together to be in that mid-table battle. Bath have been really inconsistent this season, you could say they have only lost to Exeter at home. That though would mask that they have had 2 draws at home. I think this will be close but Bath have shown they are hard to beat at home (sorry if I’ve contradicted myself there).
Harlequins v Worcester Warriors – Harlequins by 5
Quins have quietly climbed to 3rd in the table. It’s amazing that they have managed that without a winning record! They are 6 wins and 6 losses but 9 bonus points makes them the best of the rest, after Exeter and Saracens. Worcester will be desperate for something out of this game as they are second from bottom. I think that a losing bonus point is the best they will do.
Saracens v Leicester Tigers – Saracens by 7
Simple picking rule, if Saracens are at home pick them. It’s worked for a few years now and there’s no reason to think it’ll stop now. Tigers did have a couple of good results over the New Year but those were at home. Only 1 away win so far this season and a trip to the Champions….well it’s only 1 result isn’t it?
BTW I have pulled the margin in a bit due to the number of players Saracens provide to England.
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