In Hosie’s absence this week, Hutch shares his SuperBru predictions for this weekend’s Aviva Premiership matches. Let us know what you think.
Bath v Sale Sharks
Sale sprang a surprise last weekend by beating Northampton, and they may just do the same at Bath this evening – they have won 4 of the last 5 meetings between the sides and their tails will be up. It’s safer to stick with the home side though, and Bath ought to have enough quality to ward off the Sharks’ threat. Bath by 5.
Exeter Chiefs v Gloucester
As we await news of the new European Cup format and qualification, these two teams currently sit in 8th and 9th and need a strong finish to the season to stand a chance of participating. The Chiefs have won just 2 of their last 10 Premiership matches, and Sandy Park hasn’t been quite the fortress they’d like it to be this year. It really could go either way, but instinct says that Gloucester will sneak a win and leapfrog their opponents in the table. Gloucester by 3.
Harlequins v London Irish
The Exiles have lost 3 on the bounce after a mini-resurgence at the start of this year, whilst Quins welcome back their England contingent targeting 5 wins from their remaining games to give them a chance of a place in the top four. Their slim hopes would be dashed immediately with a home defeat here, and I think they’ll win reasonably comfortably. Quins by 18.
Wasps v Saracens
Wasps were very fortunate to deny Worcester a first win of the season last weekend, and have generally slipped off the pace over the last few weeks. All the signs suggest that Sarries will continue their relentless march to the knockout stages. Sarries by 13.
Northampton Saints v Leicester Tigers
The midlands derby has a slightly different feel to it after the Saints’ defeat to Sale last week – you’d have had no hesitation before backing the home side, but now you look at it slightly differently. The Tigers haven’t lost in the league since before Christmas, and have had the upper hand over their neighbours for some time now. Another pick that could go either way, but home advantage sways it for me and perhaps the Saints will bounce back. Saints by 5.
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors
Last chance saloon for the Warriors if they are still hoping to avoid the drop. The Falcons haven’t won in the league since October, but the Warriors can’t seem to buy a victory at the moment, and so even if they get into a winning position at Kingston Park, they’d probably still throw it away somehow. Newcastle by 6.