Here we are at the last round of Premiership action before the European Champions Cup gets takes over for a couple of weeks, just as the domestic league is building momentum nicely. But I won’t get started on that again…here are my predictions for Round 6.
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Harlequins v Sale
Each side has two wins to their name this season, with the Sharks’ thumping of Gloucester last week particularly notable, whilst Quins have lost the last two in a row, albeit against strong opposition in the shape of Northampton and Leicester. The honours are fairly even in terms of previous meetings between the teams, but the last four have been won by the home side – and given Quins’ reputation for strong home form, and Sale’s travails on the road, you’ve got to pick the home team here, and the last 6 matches have been decided by an average of 4.5 points. Harlequins by 4.
Average Superbru prediction: Harlequins by 4.53 | Bookie Handicap: Harlequins -6.5
Exeter v Newcastle
It’s four wins from five for the Falcons so far, and they sit one spot above the Champions in 3rd place on the table. But still, I can only really see a home win in this fixture, as surely Newcastle’s run in the top four will end soon? The last seven meetings have been won by Exeter by an average of over 27 points, but it should be closer than that. Exeter by 13.
Average Superbru prediction: Exeter by 5.92 | Bookie Handicap: Exeter -13.5
London Irish v Leicester
The Exiles have been going backwards since week one, whilst the Tigers’ trajectory has been the opposite. I can’t see past a win for the away side here. Leicester by 16.
Average Superbru prediction: Leicester by 10.25 | Bookie Handicap: Leicester -9.5
Gloucester v Northampton
Shipping 57 points to Sale last weekend will have hurt the Gloucester team and fans, and they’ll return to Kingsholm desperate to make amends. A visit from top-of-the-table Northampton won’t be easy though, and their record against the Saints is poor – their last win was back in 2013, and I suspect Northampton will win this one too. Northampton by 6.
Average Superbru prediction: Northampton by 6.99 | Bookie Handicap: Northampton -0.5
Bath v Worcester
A huge win for Bath last weekend away at Wasps will see them returning to the Rec full of confidence, and I’d expect them to put lowly Worcester to the sword. As if 5 defeats in a row was not enough to dent morale, there was news this week that Director of Rugby Gary Gold is leaving the sinking ship at the end of the season. Bath by 33.
Average Superbru prediction: Bath by 13.72 | Bookie Handicap: Bath -18.5
Saracens v Wasps
This looks like the headline fixture of the weekend, but then you see that Wasps are languishing in 8th place, with three defeats in a row (and two of those at their home ‘fortress’). Sarries have had a few comfortable wins over Newcastle, Sale and Worcester, and I think they’ll see this is an opportunity for a resounding performance over a supposed title rival before European competition gets underway. Saracens by 16.
Average Superbru prediction: Saracens by 10.52 | Bookie Handicap: Saracens -13.5
10 treble on Leicester -9.5; Northampton to beat Gloucester; Saracens to beat Wasps: – odds 4.00
It’s three winning bets out of four so far, and this one looks fairly promising. The Tigers should cover that handicap against Irish, and Sarries will beat Wasps, so we just need the Saints to bring it home for us at Kingsholm.
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Follow Hutch on Twitter: @Hutch_James