Northampton Saints vs Ulster
Two of the biggest names in European rugby meet at Franklin Gardens with the Saints looking for their first win this season in the Champions Cup. The hosts will be desperate to avoid three losses in a row while victory for Ulster will guarantee their passage into the next round. The Saints put up a brave showing in the first round against Ulster before going down 27-22,. Ulster have selected young Nathan Doak at 9 and he will be put under severe pressure by the Saints. This will be the true test for the youngster at the very highest level.
TIP: The Saints pack will need to be at its best as Ulster will look to dominate in the forwards. The return of England star Courtney Lawes will no doubt strengthen the team and his expertise will be most needed in stopping Ulster’s driving maul. The visitors have arguably the best rolling maul in Europe and if the Saints can defend it well, then that takes away a big attacking weapon for Ulster. The bookies have the Saints as favourites and I also tip them for the win. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting 1.80, Playabets 1.78 and Sunbet 1.76
HEAD TO HEAD STATS
Northampton Saints vs Ulster
- In the five previous between these sides, Ulster have three wins and Northampton two.
- Saints have lost their last two home matches against Ulster.
- Ulster won their first round meeting 27-22.
Latest results for both teams
Ulster won their last match 44-8 against Newcastle while Ulster lost their last match 18-13 to Munster.
The Saints will look to play their expansive game and if it comes off then it’s a joy to watch. They have dangerous players all through their backline and new recruit Courtnall Skosan has been in great try scoring form. The battle between the two sets of loose forwards will go a long way to deciding the outcome in this match. Ulster have Springbok Duane Vermeulen at eight and if the Saints can keep him quite then they could come away with the win. I expect the Saints to win this match by 6 points.
- Probable Starting XVs
15 George Furbank, 14 Courtnall Skosan, 13 Tom Litchfield, 12 Rory Hutchinson, 11 Tom Collins, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Alex Mitchell, 8 Teimana Harrison, 7 Lewis Ludlam (c), 6 Courtney Lawes, 5 Brandon Nansen, 4 David Ribbans, 3 Paul Hill, 2 Sam Matavesi, 1 Alex Waller
15 Michael Lowry, 14 Rob Baloucoune, 13 James Hume, 12 Stewart Moore, 11 Ethan McIlroy, 10 Billy Burns, 9 Nathan Doak, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Nick Timoney, 6 Marcus Rea, 5 Kieran Treadwell, 4 Alan O’Connor (c), 3 Marty Moore, 2 Rob Herring, 1 Andy Warwick
Odds for this bet
The best odds on the Northampton Saints victory are as follows:
Odds comparison on the Northampton Saints handicap :
The complete odds on the Northampton Saints handicap:
Worldsportsbetting (-1.5) 1.90
Sunbet (-1.5) 1.87
Playabets (-1.5) 1.88
Predictions and Odds in details
Dan Biggar will again be the most important player for Saints and if he can get his potent backline into the match then we could see some fireworks. Ulster will be missing their skipper Iain Henderson and the Saints should have the advantage in the forwards due to the Lions absence. The bookies are offering decent returns on the Saints outright win therefore I suggest the home team on the handicap. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting (-1.5) 1.90, Sunbet (-1.5) 1.87 and Playabets (-1.5) 1.88
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.