The Super Rugby Aotearoa competition continues this weekend with two matches in New Zealand, as the post-lockdown event reaches round five.
Reigning Super Rugby champions the Crusaders have a top-of-the-table clash with the Blues on home turf at the Orangetheory Stadium on Saturday (kick off 9.05 SAST).
Coach Scott Robertson’s men fired up the afterburners to chalk up a 40-20 win away to the Highlanders last weekend.
An imposing second half effort proved too much for the hosts in Dunedin, leaving the Christchurch side with three wins from three.
It’s a record matched by their visitors this Saturday, who come into the crunch clash off the back of their bye week, having also seen off the Highlanders a fortnight ago.
Sunday’s game sees attention turn to Wellington where the Hurricanes host the Highlanders at 5.35.
The ‘Canes were winners last Sunday as they edged out the Chiefs 25-18 at the FMG Stadium in Waikato.
It was their first victory of the new campaign, leaving them just a point behind their visitors albeit way off the pace of the top two.
The Highlanders have just their opening night Forsyth Barr Stadium win over the sorry Chiefs for comfort.
Their curtain-raising victims, who have played a game more than everyone else, will watch the scoreboards rattle around from the distance of their bye week, with four losses from four giving them plenty of pause for thought.
Prediction methodology explained
The expected win percentage is based off publicly available odds. For example, if a team’s odds are 2.30, the expected chance of winning is 43%. If the odds are 1.62 the expected chance of winning is 62% and so on. These are accurate at the time of writing but are subject to change. Where there is no value listed, the odds were not available at the time of writing.
The predicted points margin draws on calculations from by a New Zealand statistician.
Super Rugby Aotearoa: Fixtures and kick off times – Round 5
Times are SAST.
Saturday, 11 July: Crusaders vs Blues – 9:05
Sunday, 12 July: Hurricanes vs Highlanders – 5:35
Super Rugby NZ Predictions: Round 5
Crusaders vs Blues
Hurricanes vs Highlanders
Antoinette is a recovering journalist, having written for Sports Illustrated, The Guardian, Daily Maverick and others. She has won multiple SAB Journalist of the Year awards, across a variety of categories. She thinks it’s strange writing about herself in the third person, unless she’s playing as herself in The Sims…which she’s been doing for over 20 years.