Stormers vs Sharks

The long awaited Rainbow Cup has finally arrived albeit a week later than scheduled. We could not ask for a more appetizing match to kick of the tournament as the two coastal giants clash and there will be extra spice as Springbok captain Siya Kolisi faces his former team for the first time. These teams will be eager to impress the Springbok coach before the British Lions tour. The Sharks have shown that they have a complete team with exciting backline players and have a classy halfback pairing in Curwin Bosch and Sanele Nohamba but it’s their pack that will face the sternest test in this match. The Stormers boast the World Cup winning front row of the Springboks and the Sharks will have to front up otherwise it could turn into a long day for the Sharks pack. Both sides are littered with quality players in the backline and hopefully the teams play an expansive game which should be entertaining for everyone. The reception that Kolisi and Sikhumbuzo Notshe receive will be very hostile as they return to their former home ground. The Sharks have players that would make you lean towards them playing an expansive game but that will only be possible if they get parity or ascendency in the forwards.  Springboks Damian Willemse and Herschel Jantjies are always dangerous especially when they get forward ball so the Sharks will need to keep them under wraps otherwise they can take the game away very quickly.

TIP:  This being the first match after a long break could see both teams testing each other out at first but the match could be decided in the forwards .The Stormers seem to have the edge in that department but the Sharks will hope that players like speedsters Aphelele Fassi and Sbu Nkosi can make those storming runs into the danger areas. Kolisi and Notshe have always shown their willingness to run and are brilliant at linking the forwards and backs. The Stormers plan is always to be dominate up front and then unleash the backs but if the Sharks match them up front then I see a Sharks victory. The bookies have the Stormers as favourites but I’m going for an upset Sharks win. The best odds on the Sharks victory are at Worldsportsbetting 2.40, Hollywoodbets 2.35 and Sunbet 2.28 

HEAD TO HEAD STATS

Stormers vs Sharks

  • In the last six meetings between the sides there have been four Sharks wins to the Stormers two wins.
  • The last ten matches have seen the home team win on seven occasions.
  • The last match between them saw the Sharks win 24-14.

Latest results for both teams

The Stormers won their last match against the Lions 44-12 while the Sharks won their last match 45-12 against the Bulls.

PREDICTION

The first game of the competition will see both teams rusty and there will be a fair share of handling errors but the team that can capitalize on their opponents errors will win. In this regards we saw during the Franchise Cup that the Sharks were the most dangerous team on turnover ball. They have the best attacking fullback in Aphelele Fassi and he has an eye for the smallest of gaps and makes life difficult for his opponents because he also has express pace. This will be a baptism of fire for Siya Kolisi on his return to his former home but I expect this to bring out the best in the Springbok Captain. This is the main reason that I’m tipping the Sharks for an upset win by 5 points

  • Probable Starting XVs

Stormers

15 Warrick Gelant, 14 Sergeal Petersen, 13 Dan du Plessis, 12 Rikus Pretorius, 11 Leolin Zas, 10 Damian Willemse, 9 Herschel Jantjies, 8 Juarno Augustus, 7 Ernst van Rhyn, 6 Chris van Zyl, 5 JD Schickerling, 4 Salmaan Moerat, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Bongi Mbonambi, 1 Steven Kitshoff.

Sharks

15 Aphelele Fassi, 14 Sbu Nkosi, 13 Lukhanyo Am, 12 Jeremy Ward, 11 Yaw Penxe, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Sanele Nohamba, 8 Sikhumbuzo Notshe , 7 Siya Kolisi, 6 James Venter, 5 Hyron Andrews, 4 JJ van der Mescht, 3 John-Hubert Meyer, 2 Kerron van Vuuren, 1 Ox Nche

Odds for this bet:

These are the best odds on an upset Sharks victory:

Worldsportsbetting 2.40

Hollywoodbets 2.35

Sunbet 2.28

Odds comparison on the Sharks handicap

The complete odds on the Sharks handicap are as follows:

Worldsportsbetting (+4.5) 1.80

Hollywoodbets (+3.5) 1.90

Sunbet (+3.5) 1.90

Predictions and Odds in details

The rivalry between these sides is always intense and although this is the first match in a while I expect both teams to come out firing to set a marker for the rest of the competition. The home team’s advantage isn’t great these days as there are no crowds and the Sharks will want to use this to their advantage. There are some interesting match-ups and none more so than the head to head battle between Curwin Bosch and Damian Willemse and they both will look to being the understudy to Handre Pollard in the series against the British Lions. The matches between these two rivals are always close and I expect the same on Saturday therefore I suggest the safe bet on the Sharks handicap. The best odds on the Sharks handicap are as follows: Worldsportsbetting (+4.5) 1.80, Hollywoodbets (+3.5) 1.90 and Sunbet (+3.5) 1.90

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