My upset pick of the Chiefs over the Jaguares didn’t come off last week, despite a fast start from the Kiwis, the Jaguares came back and then held the lead firm until the end. It has meant a drop in the rankings, and now with only three matches to go, I can’t see there being any more upsets – 3 home wins and another title for the Crusaders.
I’ve enjoyed the Super Rugby season this year, but it’s fizzling out now because we know how it ends. And with the Northern Hemisphere teams in limbo with no June Internationals, some are beginning their World Cup preparations, others are resting, and it’s a slightly odd time in the world of rugby with not a lot going on.
Anyway, here are your Super Rugby predictions for the two semi-finals this weekend.
Jaguares v Brumbies
It’s the Brumbies’ home form that has carried them to the semi-finals, and I really don’t fancy them in Buenos Aires this weekend. Particularly up against the Jaguares who rarely lose at home, and who beat the Brumbies in the regular season back in April. Both teams are at full-strength with plenty of internationals on display, but I think this is a trip too far for the Australians.
Jaguares by 16
Crusaders v Hurricanes
The Crusaders have won the last four against their New Zealand rivals, all fairly comfortably, and that includes beating them both home and away this season. The champions’ rest and rotation policy has served them so well that they finally named a full-strength team for the quarter-finals last weekend, and now they are unchanged for the semi. I’m looking forward to seeing Richie Mo’unga up against Beauden Barrett as the two All Black fly-halves compete for a starting berth in the Rugby World Cup, and it should be a cracker of a game, but I can’t see anything but a home win. Crusaders by 13
Follow Hutch on Twitter: @Hutch_James