Sale Sharks vs Leicester

These two teams come into this match desperately seeking victory for different reasons. Sale are in third place on the log knowing if they can get into second place they will get the semifinal at home while the Tigers lie in eighth playing for a top six position to qualify for Europe next season. There is no doubt that the Sharks are the form team having won their last four matches but will be without the services of Rob Du Preez because of his red card suspension. The Tigers will also be boosted by their come from behind victory over Ulster that confirmed their place in the Challenge Cup final. The Sale team have one of the strongest forward packs in the Premiership and dominate most opponents but the Tigers also have a strong pack so the battle upfront will go a long way to deciding who wins this match. We have seen that the Sharks are very one dimensional and if they don’t gain the advantage in the forwards then they don’t have a plan B. The Tigers have an all international front row and will no doubt be targeting Sale at scrum time. The irrepressible Faf de Klerk is brilliant when he gets good ball from the forwards and the Tigers only chance of victory is to legally disrupt this service. I say legally as the Tigers have the worst disciplinary record in the league and if they get any yellow or red cards then there is very little chance of upsetting the Sharks. Marlande Yarde has been in superb try scoring form this season but will come up against of the most intimidating wingers in Nemani Nadolo. Yarde will need to use all his speed and guile to get past the giant Fijian and more importantly his defence will have to be top class to keep Nadolo quiet.

TIP: The Sale Sharks will look to power their way to victory not only through their giant pack but they will also use Rohan Janse van Rensburg as the battering ram in the midfield. He always gets over the advantage line and the Leicester defence will need to find a way to stop the big centre from making those powerful runs. I feel that the Sharks form and the bigger carrot in front of them will see them win this encounter. The bookies are in agreement and have the Sharks as heavy favourites. The best odds on the Sharks victory are as follows:  Worldsportsbetting 1.25, Playabets 1.21 and Sunbet 1.24

HEAD TO HEAD STATS

Sale Sharks vs Leicester

  • The last five matches between these teams have seen the victorious in all the matches.
  • The last five home matches for the Sharks against the Tigers have seen one victory for the Tigers and four for the Sharks.
  • The most recent match between the two saw the Sharks score a 15-25 away victory.

Latest results for both teams

The Sharks won their last match against Worcester 32-35 while the Tigers won their last match against Ulster 33-24.

PREDICTION

The Tigers in their last match showed how much they rely on George Ford and he was brilliant in their comeback but also the second half introduction of England’s Ben Young changed the course of the match. This is an area the Tigers hold an advantage as Sale’s first choice flyhalf Du Preez is suspended. The Tigers will need to stop the Sharks rolling mauls as they score plenty of tries from this attacking weapon. The man that is most dangerous in the mauls is their South African hooker Akker van der Merwe who is almost unstoppable close to the line. I feel that the match will be close but the Sharks will eventually win this match by less than 10 points.

  • Probable Starting XVs

Sale Sharks

15 Luke James, 14 Arron Reed, 13 Sam James, 12 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 11 Marland Yarde, 10 AJ MacGinty, 9 Faf de Klerk (captain), 8 Daniel du Preez, 7 Tom Curry, 6 Jean-Luc du Preez, 5, 4 Cameron Neild,4 Cobus Wiese, 3 Coenie Oosthuizen, 2 Akker van der Merwe, 1 Ross Harrison

Leicester

15 Freddie Steward, 14 Guy Porter, 13 Matias Moroni, 12 Matt Scott, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 George Ford, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Jasper Wiese, 7 Hanro Liebenberg, 6 George Martin, 5 Calum Green, 4 Harry Wells, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs (captain), 1 Ellis Genge.

Odds for this bet

These are the best odds on the Sale Sharks outright victory.

Worldsportsbetting 1.25

Playabets 1.21

Sunbet 1.24

Odds comparison on a Leicester Tigers handicap

The complete odds on the Leicester Tigers handicaps are as follows:

Worldsportsbetting (+10.5) 1.90

Sunbet (+9.5) 1.87

Playabets (+10.5) 1.83

Predictions and Odds in details

The Sharks know that a semi-final at home is their best opportunity to get to their first Premiership final therefore they will be going all out for the victory. The Tigers are also chasing the Champions Cup spot and not qualifying for Europe will be seen as a season of failure. This means that this match could turn into an arm wrestle and shouldn’t be a high scoring affair. The Tigers have shown even in the matches that they lost, they are always competitive until the final whistle. The Sharks are the opposite because once they have the lead they tend to defend that lead and not pull away from opponents. The odds on the Sharks victory are not great therefore I suggest the Tigers on the handicap. These are the best odds on the Tigers handicap: Worldsportsbetting (+10.5) 1.90, Sunbet (+9.5) 1.87 and Playabets (+10.5) 1.83

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