JUANDRE JOUBERT explains his Superbru picks for round two of Vodacom Super Rugby.
I got 5/7 in round 1, which wasn’t great, but it could have been worse. The Lions surprised me by claiming their first victory in Argentina, and the Chiefs blew a big lead against a 14-man Highlanders team.
Here are my picks for round two:
HIGHLANDERS vs REDS
The Reds open their campaign with a tough trip to Dunedin to face the Highlanders, who claimed an impressive victory over the Chiefs in round one. They have recalled a couple of All Blacks, and I see them claiming a comfortable victory at home.
Highlanders by 15
SUNWOLVES vs WARATAHS
Bernard Foley’s missed penalty cost the Waratahs a win against the Hurricanes last week, while the Sunwolves suffered a heavy defeat at the hands of the Sharks. This week will be different for the Tahs, and the Sunwolves can expect yet another hiding.
Waratahs by 40
CRUSADERS vs HURRICANES
Another tasty New Zealand derby to start off your Saturday as the Hurricanes travel to Christchurch to take on the defending champions. Both teams had to rely on missed opposition kicks at goal to ensure victory last week. The Crusaders are a tough nut to crack, especially at home. Beauden Barrett is being rested by the Canes, so I will give this one to the home side.
Crusaders by 8
BRUMBIES vs CHIEFS
Both these teams claimed losing bonus points at home in round one, but the Chiefs might still be wondering how they lost against a 14-man Highlanders team after having a healthy lead. The Chiefs have won four in a row against the team from Canberra and will make it five on Saturday.
Chiefs by 9
SHARKS vs BLUES
The Sharks opened their campaign with a comfortable victory over the Sunwolves, while the Blues should’ve beaten the Crusaders. The Durban-based side has dominated this fixture in the past decade, winning nine out of 10. That dominance will continue on Saturday.
Sharks by 13
STORMERS vs LIONS
The Stormers were thrashed at Loftus, with off-field issues appearing to affect their on-field performance. The Lions visit Cape Town after an impressive victory over the Jaguares, in which their forwards dominated. I doubt the Stormers will have resolved their issues in a week and expect the Lions to make it two wins from two.
Lions by 13
JAGUARES vs VODACOM BULLS
The Lions have provided the Bulls with the blueprint on how to defeat the Jaguares at home. Whether they use it, remains to be seen. The Bulls will come into the clash with sky-high confidence after they dismantled the Stormers at Loftus. They have never won in Buenos Aires, but that might change on Saturday.
Bulls by 6
– Joubert is Highbury Media’s digital media manager, who has won the company’s Super Rugby Superbru pool for two years running.
Photo: Muzi Ntombela/Backpage Pix