THE MONEY MAN is putting R750 on the Hurricanes to beat the Sharks by 12 or more points in Wellington.
Bookies are in business to make money, it's what they do well. When they handicap a game, you can be sure they are reasonably accurate.
I made a promise to those of you who wanted to learn how to bet successfully that I would make a profit, and despite two poor weeks, the initial R5,000 given to me by SARugbymag.co.za is at R16,200. I have not panicked and tried to win back money on each game and by any investor's portfolio a return of 244% is unheard of.
We have won some close ones and lost our share. I try to win every bet I make. In the last two weeks I have selected 12/14 SuperBru picks yet lost money.
The good news is that round 13 is nearly upon us and I have done more research this week than any other, in order to get back to winning ways.
Crusaders (-15.5) vs Reds(+15.5)
At the beginning of the week the Crusaders were -13.5 favourites for this game, so for them to firm up another two points means there must be some big cash being bet on the Crusaders. The Crusaders have been very hit and miss this year and at 5-6 they’d need a minor miracle to play in the post-season. The Reds are a team in dire straits; only four players remain from the 2011 championship-winning team and Quade Cooper is rumoured to be heading to France next year, which would leave three. These distractions cannot be helping a team that is 2-8. Make no mistake, the Reds are a poor rugby team and when they lose they tend to lose big. Out of their eight losses, five have been by 16 points or more, so the 15.5 points will be not too much trouble for the Crusaders, who are still mathematically alive for the play-offs. Interestingly, four of the five Crusaders victories have been by at least 14 points, and all those teams were better than the Reds. I will be putting down R250 for the Crusaders to win by 16 points or more.
Rebels (-4.5) vs Blues (+4.5)
At 5-5, the Rebels have been the surprise team of this tournament. Last week they cost me money and I believe the handicap is pretty much spot on. The 2-9 Blues have nothing to play for and even pride has long gone, as they have been dismal this year. They are 0-7 on the road, but don’t get blown out of many games. They play helter-skelter attacking rugby, which has led to many handling errors this year, and this could be the difference against an organised outfit like the Rebels. If you factor in that Jerome Kaino and Charles Piutau will not be playing then this really doesn’t look good for the Blues. The Rebels are in with a shout to qualify for a play-off spot and I wonder if the pressure will get to them. I have been immensely impressed with their young flyhalf Jack Debreczeni, who has a leg that could kick-start a 747 Jumbo Jet. I think he will rise to the occasion and kick the Rebels clear by at least five points. Take the Rebels at 9/10 -4.5 points. I have for R500.
Hurricanes (-11.5) vs Sharks (+11.5)
Firstly, my apologies for only getting this to you just before kick-off. I am in the bush this weekend and had email problems! This is my banker for the weekend, and I reckon Canes coaches Chris Boyd and John Plumtree, formerly of the Sharks, will be treating the game like a Super Rugby final. I'm putting R750 on them to win by 12-plus (I've predicted for them to win by 26 on SuperBru) and I strongly suggest you do the same.
Force (+75) vs Waratahs (-7.5)
The Force have lost 10 in a row since beating the Tahs in Sydney and it will become 11 on Saturday. I'm putting R500 on the defending champions to win by eight-plus.
Lions (-1.5) vs Highlanders (+1.5)
Weather: Partly cloudly
I won't be betting on this game, but have picked the Lions to win by four on SuperBru.
Stormers (-4.5) vs Brumbies (+4.5)
The Stormers rarely produce back-to-back bad performances and I expect them to bounce back against the Brumbies at Newlands.
A lot of you have asked for an accumulator for this weekend's matches, so here is some good advice: Take the Crusaders -15.5, Hurricanes -11.5, Waratahs -7.5, Stormers -4.5, Rebels -4.5 and Lions -1.5. I am going to put R200 on and if I did my sums right it should pay R9,409.18. Which is odds of 47/1.
Remember, though, that an accumulator is a Hail Mary. Watch the video below to see what I mean by that.
Photo: Anesh Debiky/AFP Photo