Scarlets vs Lions
The Lions surprised many by winning their opening match against Zebre in Italy. Their victory was set up in the first half and led by an incredible 35-0 at half time. The Lions have always been a side that loves to attack and we saw this in their first half performance. Their problem is their defence and the last match was classical Lions, first half great on attack and second half weak on defence. The Scarlets were unlucky to lose their first match and came within a whisker of making a winning comeback against Edinburgh. We can be assured of exciting rugby as both these teams love running the ball. The Lions have the edge in the scrums as they have a very powerful front row so Scarlets will want to keep the ball in play as much as possible. The Welsh team will be keen to get their first win and the Lions inexperience could be their down fall in this match.
TIP: The Scarlets possess an excellent backline that include internationals like Johnny McNicholl and Jonathan Davies. These players don’t need a lot of space to weave their magic and if the Lions want to win this game then they need to fix their defensive structures. The Lions have their own attacking weapons in the speedy Rabz Maxwane and Wandisile Simelane. Simelane is destined to be a future Springbok but needs to pass instead of always taking the contact. The Lions may have the edge in the scrum otherwise the two sets of packs are very evenly matched. The bookies have the Scarlets as heavy favourites and I am also tipping them for a big win. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting 1.14, Playabets 1.11 and Sunbet 1.15
HEAD TO HEAD STATS
Scarlets vs Lions
- This is the first meeting between the sides.
Latest results for both teams
Scarlets lost their last match 26-22 to Edinburgh while the Lions won their last match 38-26 to Zebre.
These teams both have very good loose trios with the Scarlets having the workhorse number 8 in Sione Kalamafoni. He is always having the highest tackle count and carries and is a go to man at the back of the scrum. He will be in battle with former Springbok Jaco Kriel. Kriel was once the best flankers in SA but injuries have blighted his career and he will want to show he is not a spent force. The player that was responsible for most of the Scarlets attacking moves was Scott Williams and he has been a shrewd acquisition for the home team. If he can again get his outside backs running into gaps then Scarlets will easily win this match. The overall experience and international quality in the Scarlets team makes me predict a home win by more than 15 points
- Probable Starting XVs
15 Johnny McNicholl, 14 Ryan Conbeer, 13 Jonathan Davies (c), 12 Scott Williams, 11 Steff Evans, 10 Dan Jones, 9 Kieran Hardy, 8 Sione Kalamafoni, 7 Dan Davis, 6 Blade Thomson, 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Aaron Shingler, 3 Samson Lee, 2 Ryan Elias, 1 Rob Evans
15 EW Viljoen, 14 Jamba Ulengo, 13 Wandisile Simelane, 12 Burger Odendaal (captain), 11 Rabz Maxwane, 10 Jordan Hendrikse, 9 Andre Warner, 8 Francke Horn, 7 Vincent Tshituka, 6 Jaco Kriel, 5 Pieter Jansen van Vuren, 4 Ruben Schoeman, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Jaco Visagie, 1 Ruan Dreyer.
Odds for this bet
The best odds on the Scarlets victory are as follows:
Odds comparison on the Scarlets handicap victory:
The complete odds on the Scarlets handicap victory:
Worldsportsbetting (-13.5) 1.90
Sunbet (-12.5) 1.87
Playabets (-13.5) 1.80
Predictions and Odds in details
The Lions will need to balance their play and if they are to continue running the ball from their own half then they must make certain there is no turnovers as the Scarlets are great at counter attacking. Lions 10 Jordan Hendrikse is very young and inexperienced at this level but has a massive boot on him. He will need to use his boot to gain territory for the Lions. These teams both fancy the driving maul so discipline will be key for both sides.Scarlets need to be aware that Hendrikse is well capable of kicking penalty goals from his own half. I am expecting the Scarlets to try and run the heavy Lions pack ragged and capitalize in the second half. The bookies are not offering any value on the Scarlets outright win therefore I suggest the home team on the handicap. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting (-13.5) 1.90, Sunbet (-12.5) 1.87 and Playabets (-13.5) 1.80
Sports crazy fan that follows all major sport but the game with the oval ball is my real passion. Was an age level rugby coach and a huge supporter of the Springboks and diehard Liverpool man. I’m an experienced punter and sports writer whose predictions/tips are sure to stir up the emotions. I love the occasional wager on the underdog.