Saders to start, Tahs to finish

A “Heavy on the pink tickets” seven game weekend with all five SA sides in the mix! Catch all the teams, times, venues, odds and all of AJ Venter, Mils Muliaina and Tank Lanning’s SuperBru picks.

Tank Lanning

Another tricky Friday morning to navigate at work given that Bulls game at mid-day, especially if you try and squeeze in what should be a cracker between the Saders and Canes:

Friday, May 29

09:35 – Crusaders vs Hurricanes (Trafalgar Park, Nelson)

11:40 – Brumbies vs Bulls (GIO Stadium, Canberra)

19:10 – Sharks vs Rebels (Kings Park, Durban)

Saturday, May 30

09:35 – Highlanders vs Chiefs (Rugby Park, Invercargill)

11:40 – Force vs Reds (nib Stadium, Perth)

17:05 – Stormers vs Cheetahs (Newlands, Cape Town)

19:10 – Lions vs Waratahs (Ellis Park, Johannesburg)

The Bulls have an Everest to climb against the Brumbies to ensure they do not plunge to their 10th consecutive defeat abroad. And instead of keeping disruptions to a minimum, Frans Ludeke has made six changes including resting Victor Matfield. This against a side that boast the best lineout in the tournament via a success rate of 91 percent, while the Bulls are ranked sixth-best at 88 percent.

The Sharks have been messy, losing 9 of their 14 games this year, thus finding themselves out of the playoffs – for only the second time since 2007. However, the men from Durban picked up a good 21-14 win in their final tour match against the Reds last weekend and should have enough in the tank to get past the Rebels at home. I would still like to see S’bura Sithole at centre, though, with JP Pietersen on the wing.

On Saturday in Cape Town Naka Drotske’s last ever Cheetahs team (Franco Smith takes over as head coach from next week) take on the Stormers. Flyhalf Joe Pietersen and flank Tienie Burger are back, while Sergeal Petersen is a surprise pick ahead of Cornal Hendricks. I am not seeing a fairytale farewell for Naka and Os I am afraid. The Stormers might be copping it from all sides for not scoring enough tries, but they should still have too much skill at hand against a side clearly in disarray.

Expect a corker in Jozi people! Both the Brus and Bookies are basically on the fence on this one. Can the Lions scrum dig massively deep yet again and give the home side a platform to take on a seriously good Tahs side? Jacques Potgieter is fit and will be itching to take on his fellow Saffers. The 2014 champs were dealt a significant blow to their title defence by the suspension of Tolu Latu and Will Skelton for their part in a tackle on Sam Whitelock, though. Palu vs Whiteley and Hooper vs Kriel will be fun to watch, as will keeping Naiyaravoro and Folau in check. Tough one to call!

And like last week, the Bru’s and the Bookies agree on every single game, but only just! I reckon at least 4 games could go either way. In the SuperBru “Legends” pool I have been knocked down to third spot on the log after my scramble last week. Mils “Mils” Muliaina and AJ “The Oracle” Venter are vying for top spot on 97.5 and 97 points respectively. So given that they have both made all their picks already, I thought I would feature BOTH in this week’s set of predictions …

My predictions:

CRUSADERS to beat Hurricanes by 7

BRUMBIES to beat Bulls by 5

SHARKS to beat Rebels by 11

HIGHLANDERS to beat Chiefs by 5

REDS to beat Force by 9

STORMERS to beat Cheetahs by 21

WARATAHS to beat Lions by 7

 

Mils “Mils” Muliaina’s predictions:

HURRICANES to beat Crusaders by 9

BRUMBIES to beat Bulls by 12

SHARKS to beat Rebels by 15

CHIEFS to beat Highlanders by 9

REDS to beat Force by 6

STORMERS to beat Cheetahs by 17

WARATAHS to beat Lions by 7

 

AJ “The Oracle” Venter’s predictions:

HURRICANES to beat Crusaders by 2

BRUMBIES to beat Bulls by 8

SHARKS to beat Rebels by 6

CHIEFS to beat Highlanders by 9

FORCE to beat Reds by 4

STORMERS to beat Cheetahs by 18

LIONS to beat Waratahs by 5

 

The SuperBru Community picks:

HURRICANES (77%) to beat Crusaders by 5

BRUMBIES (76%) to beat Bulls by 7

SHARKS (88%) to beat Rebels by 7

HIGHLANDERS (60%) to beat Chiefs by 0.79

FORCE (59%) to beat Reds by 1

STORMERS (97%) to beat Cheetahs by 13

WARATAHS (45%) to beat the Lions by 0.08

 

The Collated odds:

HURRICANES (8/11) to beat Crusaders (11/8)

BRUMBIES (7/17) to beat Bulls (11/5)

SHARKS (4/11) to beat Rebels (11/4)

HIGHLANDERS (5/6) to beat Chiefs (5/4)

FORCE (4/6) to beat Reds (6/4)

STORMERS (2/13) to beat Cheetahs (11/2)

WARATAHS (13/17) to beat Lions (11/8)

 

Weekend teams:

Friday, May 29

09:35 – Crusaders vs Hurricanes (Trafalgar Park, Nelson)

Crusaders: 15 Tom Taylor, 14 Nafi Tuitavake, 13 Robbie Fruean, 12 David Havili, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Dan Carter, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Jordan Taufua, 7 Richie McCaw (c), 6 Matt Todd, 5 Luke Romano, 4 Jimmy Tupou, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Alex Hodgman.

Bench: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Tim Perry, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Dominic Bird, 20 Luke Whitelock, 21 Andy Ellis, 22 Kieron Fonotia, 23 Jone Macilai.

Hurricanes: 15 James Marshall, 14 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 13 Conrad Smith (c), 12 Ma’a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Otere Black, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Brad Shields, 5 James Broadhurst, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 2 Dane Coles, 1 Reggie Goodes.

Bench: 16 Motu Matu’u, 17 Ben May, 18 Ben Franks, 19 Mark Abbott, 20 Victor Vito, 21 Chris Smylie, 22 Rey Lee-Lo, 23 Matt Proctor.

11:40 – Brumbies vs Bulls (GIO Stadium, Canberra)

Brumbies: 15 Jesse Mogg, 14 Henry Speight, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Robbie Coleman, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Nic White, 8 Ita Vaea, 7 David Pocock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore (c), 1 Scott Sio.

Bench: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Allan Alaalatoa, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Jordan Smiler, 20 Jarrad Butler, 21 Michael Dowsett, 22 Nigel Ah Wong, 23 James Dargaville.

Bulls: 15 Jürgen Visser, 14 Francois Hougaard, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Burger Odendaal, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Handré Pollard, 9 Rudy Paige, 8 Pierre Spies (c), 7 Arno Botha, 6 Deon Stegmann, 5 Grant Hattingh, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Marcel van der Merwe, 2 Adriaan Strauss, 1 Dean Greyling.

Bench: 16 Callie Visagie, 17 Trevor Nyakane, 18 Werner Kruger, 19 Jacques du Plessis, 20 Lappies Labuschagne, 21 Jacques-Louis Potgieter, 22 Travis Ismaiel, 23 Jesse Kriel.

19:10 – Sharks vs Rebels (Kings Park, Durban)

Sharks: 15 Lwazi Mvovo, 14 Odwa Ndungane, 13 JP Pietersen, 12 André Esterhuizen, 11 S’bura Sithole, 10 Lionel Cronje, 9 Stefan Ungerer, 8 Ryan Kankowski, 7 Willem Alberts/Etienne Oosthuizen, 6 Renaldo Bothma, 5 Marco Wentzel (c), 4 Mouritz Botha, 3 Jannie du Plessis, 2 Bismarck du Plessis, 1 Tendai Mtawarira.

Bench: 16 Franco Marais, 17 Matt Stevens, 18 Lourens Adriaanse, 19 Lubabalo Mtyanda, 20 Etienne Oosthuizen/Khaya Majola, 21 Conrad Hoffmann, 22 Fred Zeilinga, 23 Heimar Williams.

Rebels: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Dom Shipperley, 13 Sefanaia Naivalu, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Tom English, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Luke Burgess, 8 Scott Higginbotham (captain), 7 Colby Fainga’a, 6 Sean McMahon, 5 Lopeti Timani, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Laurie Weeks, 2 Pat Leafa, 1 Toby Smith

Bench: 16 Tom Sexton, 17 Cruze Ah-Nau, 18 Paul Alo-Emile, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Scott Fuglistaller, 21 Nic Stirzaker, 22 Jordy Reid, 23 Bryce Hegarty

Saturday, May 30

09:35 – Highlanders vs Chiefs (Rugby Park, Invercargill)

Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith (c), 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Richard Buckman, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Dan Pryor, 7 John Hardie, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Tom Franklin, 4 Alex Ainley, 3 Josh Hohneck, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Brendon Edmonds.

Bench: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Daniel Lienert-Brown, 18 Ross Geldenhuys, 19 Joe Latta, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Marty Banks, 23 Jason Emery.

Chiefs: 15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Hosea Gear, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Anton Lienert-Brown, 11 Bryce Heem, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Augustine Pulu, 8 Michael Leitch, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Maama Vaipulu, 5 Michael Fitzgerald, 4 Ross Filipo, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Pauliasi Manu.

Bench: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Mitchell Graham, 19 Brian Alainu’uese, 20 Mitchell Crosswell, 21 Brad Weber, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Tim Nanai-Williams.

11:40 – Force vs Reds (nib Stadium, Perth)

Force: 15 Dane Haylett-Petty, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Marcel Brache, 12 Kyle Godwin, 11 Nick Cummins, 10 Sias Ebersohn, 9 Ryan Louwrens, 8 Ben McCalman, 7 Matt Hodgson (captain), 6 Angus Cottrell, 5 Adam Coleman, 4 Steve Mafi, 3 Tetera Faulkner, 2 Nathan Charles, 1 Pek Cowan

Bench: 16 Heath Tessmann, 17 Chris Heiberg, 18 Guy Millar, 19 Sam Wykes, 20 Kane Koteka, 21 Alby Mathewson, 22 Luke Burton, 23 Patrick Dellit

Reds: 15 James O’Connor, 14 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 13 Karmichael Hunt, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Lachie Turner, 10 Quade Cooper, 9 Will Genia, 8 Jake Schatz, 7 Liam Gill, 6 Adam Thomson, 5 James Horwill, 4 Rob Simmons, 3 Greg Holmes, 2 James Hanson, 1 James Slipper (captain)

Bench: (from): 16 Andrew Ready, 17 Pettowa Paraka, 18 Sam Talakai, 19 Ed O’Donoghue, 20 Beau Robinson, 21 Nick Frisby, 22 Jake McIntyre, 23 Ben Tapuai, 24 Jamie-Jerry Taulagi

17:05 – Stormers vs Cheetahs (Newlands, Cape Town)

Stormers: 15. Cheslin Kolbe, 14. Seabelo Senatla, 13. Juan de Jongh (vice-captain), 12. Damian de Allende, 11. Dillyn Leyds, 10. Demetri Catrakilis, 9. Nic Groom, 8. Duane Vermeulen (captain), 7. Siya Kolisi, 6. Nizaam Carr, 5. Manuel Carizza, 4. Eben Etzebeth, 3. Vincent Koch, 2. Scarra Ntubeni, 1. Steven Kitshoff

Bench: 16. Bongi Mbonambi, 17. Oli Kebble, 18. Frans Malherbe, 19. Jean Kleyn, 20. Sikhumbuzo Notshe, 21. Louis Schreuder, 22. Kurt Coleman, 23. Huw Jones

Cheetahs: 15 Clayton Blommetjies, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Francois Venter, 12 Michael van der Spuy, 11 Raymond Rhule, 10 Joe Pietersen, 9 Tian Meyer, 8 Willie Britz, 7 Boom Prinsloo, 6 Tienie Burger, 5 Francois Uys (c), 4 Carl Wegner, 3 Maks van Dyk, 2 Torsten van Jaarsveld, 1 Danie Mienie.

Bench: 16 Stephan Coetzee, 17 BG Uys, 18 Ewald van der Westhuizen, 19 Steven Sykes, 20 Henco Venter, 21 Sarel Pretorius, 22 Coenie van Wyk, 23 Rayno Benjamin.

19:10 – Lions vs Waratahs (Ellis Park, Johannesburg)

Lions: 15. Andries Coetzee, 14. Ruan Combrinck, 13. Lionel Mapoe, 12. Harold Vorster, 11. Courtnall Skosan, 10. Elton Jantjies, 9. Faf de Klerk, 8. Warren Whiteley (captain), 7. Warwick Tecklenburg, 6. Jaco Kriel, 5. Franco Mostert, 4. Martin Muller, 3. Julian Redelinghuys, 2. Armand van der Merwe, 1. Schalk van der Merwe

Bench: 16. Malcolm Marx, 17. Corne Fourie, 18. Ruan Dreyer, 19. Robert Kruger, 20. Kwagga Smith, 21. Ross Cronje, 22. Marnitz Boshoff, 23. Stokkies Hanekom

Waratahs: TBA

2 Comments

  1. Tank please keep backing the Lion’s opposition! It seems to work for them!

    1. Indeed, because when I backed them, they lost!! Got the Stormers to win on Saturday, so expect another great win from the Lions

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