The Pro14 and Top14 might be taking the weekend off as the 6 Nations resumes. Not the Gallagher Premiership that needs to catchup a couple of rounds of games. It’s been interesting how the different leagues have structured the season and we’ll see if mid-season breaks become the norm.
Here is my video with my Gallagher Premiership Round 16 Predictions:
Bath v Saracens – Saracens by 5
I’ve made the mistake recently of thinking that the top 2 teams had an issues with away games during the 6 Nations. Maybe they do to an extent due to the number of players that they are missing. However Bath haven’t been going great recently with only 1 win in the last 4 games. All those losses have been by less than a handful of points so I think this one will stay tight too.
On a side note Saracens are in another salary cap story but I don’t think that will worry the players or distract the coaches.
Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers – Sale Sharks by 7
Sale are a strange one, beating Saracens one round then losing by 50 to Saints the following round. However when you’re getting visited by a team that’s only won away once all season it becomes much easier to pick. Funnily enough that win was away to Saints who did the demolition job on Sale. Still I’m comfortable with going with home win here.
Wasps v Newcastle Falcons – Newcastle Falcons by 3
Is this one where I’m picking more with emotion than sense? I’m not sure, I do know that Wasps have gone from winning 4 out of their first 5 games to only 3 out of the last 10. 2 of this wins were against Bristol.
Falcons clearly are struggling as they sit bottom of the table 5 points behind Worcester. However they did beat Worcester last weekend so there will be some confidence there. They only lost by 1 point to Wasps earlier in the season and a win here would put real pressure on the Worcester in the relegation battle.
Northampton Saints v Bristol – Northampton Saints by 3
Bristol got a very important win last weekend over Gloucester to pull them selves a little away from the relegation scrap. However they still haven’t won any games away in the Premiership.
Saints on the other had have put together 4 wins in their last 6 games to climb to 6th in the table. Crazy to think that earlier in the season people were thinking that they were in trouble of the drop. To be fair the mid-table is so tight. Wasps sit in 5th on 36 points and Tigers in 9th are only 2 points behind on 34. Yup a win or loss at the right or wrong time can see you move 4 places in the table.
Anyway the story is Saints have improved and should win this at home.
Worcester Warriors v Exeter Chiefs – Exeter Chiefs by 5
This is a nightmare for Worcester, wins over Bath and Tigers in the last 4 games looked to have put them in a good place. A loss last weekend to Falcons though tightened things right up. Then to face Exeter who fixed their traveling issues last weekend and suddenly they could do with Wasps doing them a favour. Yup Exeter should keep themselves top of the table here.
Harlequins v Gloucester Rugby – Harlequins by 5
3rd vs 4th oh this is the game of the round. Quins have zoomed up the table with 5 wins on the trot after losing 6 of their first 10 games. Gloucester who looked like the next best side all season, suddenly find themselves 7 points back in 4th. Gloucester are in danger of slipping back into the mid-table pack fighting it out for that last playoff place. Quins have lost Robshaw to England which is a key leader gone. Still I think they are on a roll and will keep the winning feeling going.
Don’t miss out on any predictions by signing up for the DrivingMaul newsletter that drops into your email inbox every Thursday.