Bristol vs Saracens
The Gallagher Premiership kicks off with a mouthwatering clash between two heavy weight contenders. Bristol will look to improve on their semifinal spot of last season while Saracens are back after a year in the lower division. Both these teams are not at full strength so the depth of their squads will be tested early doors. The Bristol team will be without Fijian Semi Radradra while Saracens will be missing a host of England national players who are on break after the Lions tour. The home team will still be wandering how they lost last season in the semifinal having been 28-0 in the lead. They will be keen to put those demons to rest in their first match. Saracens on the other hand will want nothing more than to make a statement on their return to the Premiership. They will want to show the world that they are intent on reclaiming the league that they have dominated in the last decade.
TIP: There will be no better head to head battle than when number 8s Billy Vunipola and Nathan Hughes go toe to toe. Both of them have been dropped from the national team, so they will have a lot to prove. The front rows of both teams seem evenly matched with new faces on both sides. Saracens will be aware that they are facing a baptism of fire after having breezed through the Championship. Bristol is a daunting task in front of their fans so Saracens title credentials will be thoroughly tested. The bookies have Bristol as favourites but I’m going for the upset Saracens win. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting 2.50, Playabets 2.55 and Sunbet 2.38
HEAD TO HEAD STATS
Bristol vs Saracens
- In the last five meetings between the sides Saracens have won three matches and Bristol two.
- The home team has been victorious in the last five games.
- Saracens have not beaten Bristol at home since 2016.
Latest results for both teams
Bristol lost their last match against Harlequins 43-36 while Saracens won 57-15 against Ealings in their last match.
The crowd at Ashton Gate always gives Bristol a lift and this Friday evening will be no different. Saracens will have to know that Bristol will come out firing and if they can survive the early onslaught then they could cause an upset. The home team love to throw the ball around and have dangerous attackers in Charles Piutau and Luke Morahan. These players are brilliant on counter attack therefore Saracens need to be accurate with their kicking. This match could very well come down to the attack of Bristol against the defence of Saracens. Saracens also have some deadly attackers like Rotimi Segun and Alex Lewington if they have given good ball from the forwards. The packs look evenly matched although Bristol has the more experienced players. This match will go down to the wire but I predict Saracens to snatch victory by 3 points
- Probable Starting XVs
15 Charles Piutau, 14 Luke Morahan, 13 Piers O’Conor, 12 Alapati Leiua, 11 Ioan Lloyd, 10 Callum Sheedy, 9 Andy Uren, 8 Nathan Hughes, 7 Dan Thomas, 6 Steven Luatua (c), 5 Chris Vui, 4 Ed Holmes, 3 Max Lahiff, 2 Harry Thacker, 1 Jake Woolmore
15 Elliott Obatoyinbo, 14 Alex Lewington, 13 Dom Morris, 12 Nick Tompkins, 11 Rotimi Segun, 10 Alex Lozowski, 9 Aled Davies, 8 Billy Vunipola, 7 Ben Earl, 6 Jackson Wray (c), 5 Tim Swinson, 4 Nick Isiekwe, 3 Marco Riccioni, 2 Tom Woolstencroft, 1 Ralph Adams-Hale
Odds for this bet
The best odds on the Saracens victory are as follows:
Odds comparison on the Saracens handicap :
The complete odds on the Saracens handicap:
Worldsportsbetting (+3.5) 1.90
Sunbet (+3.5) 1.87
Playabets (+3.5) 1.89
Predictions and Odds in details
The halfback battle in this match will also be keenly contested with internationals Alex Lozowski and Callum Sheedy going against each other at 10. Aled Davies and Andy Uren are very similar scrumhalves as both are pacy and love sniping around the rucks and mauls. Defence around the fringes need to be at its best to contain these players. Saracens have always shown the desire to launch attacks with their driving maul and I expect this to continue, so the Bristol pack needs to be aware of this danger. One Saracens player that will know Bristol very well is Ben Earl as he spend last season on loan at the Bears. He will be keen to replicate his form and could be a major danger for Bristol. The bookies are offering great returns on the Saracens upset win but if you looking for a safer bet then I suggest taking Saracens on the handicap. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting (+3.5) 1.90, Sunbet (+3.5) 1.87 and Playabets (+3.5) 1.89
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.