Let’s not dwell too much on my predictions for Round 1, where four out of 10 was a miserable return and below par. But I’ll accept the failure and move on, and Round 2 will be a different story.
Here are my Heineken Champions Cup picks for Round 2.
Leicester v Scarlets
A home defeat last week means the Scarlets are up against it already, and this is probably the away trip they are most likely to win. The Tigers have been fairly average so far this year, and I fancy an upset to kick us off. Scarlets by 2
Munster v Gloucester
This game is a great prospect at Thomond Park, although after drawing away at Sandy Park last week, it’s hard to see Gloucester winning away, where so few teams have been successful. Munster by 9
Castres v Exeter
The Chiefs had high hopes coming into this tournament, but they couldn’t manage a home win in Round 1. Castres are 6th in the Top 14, but they looked average against Gloucester and lost their last match at home, so I think Exeter can get back on track with a win in France. Exeter by 7
Edinburgh v Toulon
The Scots were better than expected away in Montpellier last weekend, which should give them confidence hosting Toulon at Murrayfield. There is rain forecast, and Toulon’s stars won’t fancy that much. Edinburgh by 2
Wasps v Bath
Familiar foes in the Premiership, and a loss for either team will likely mean elimination. It’s a tough group with Leinster and Toulouse, and Bath’s self-inflicted defeat at the Rec has not done them any favours. A home win is the sensible pick here, and it would put Wasps back in contention. Wasps by 13
Saracens v Lyon
Losing at home to Cardiff isn’t the ideal preparation for a French team making the trip to Saracens. Even with all the injuries, Sarries should walk this. Saracens by 23
Racing v Ulster
A win over Leicester last weekend flew in the face of Ulster’s Pro14 form, and I’m not sure how much they have improved or whether the Tigers were just rubbish. Either way, picking Racing to win at home is usually a good idea. Racing by 9
Newcastle v Montpellier
How on earth did the Falcons win in Toulon? Bottom of the Premiership and with no real prospect of progressing in this tournament, they somehow pulled out the victory. Can they back it up with a win over Montpellier? I’m not sure. Montpellier by 6
Toulouse v Leinster
After demolishing Wasps, this will be a great measure of Leinster’s credentials. They certainly have the personnel, and I think they’ll back it up. Leinster by 13
Cardiff v Glasgow
The Blues have beaten Glasgow just once in their last 9 matches against Glasgow, and although they won in Lyon last weekend, I fancy Glasgow here. Glasgow by 4
What do you think of these predictions?
Follow Hutch on Twitter: @Hutch_James