Ulster vs Sharks
Both teams have already qualified for the playoffs but are chasing a top four finish to claim a home semi-final if they get past the quarter finals. Ulster won their last match 16-10 against Edinburgh which ended a run of three consecutive defeats. They were comfortably placed in the top two for much of the season until they lost three in a row. The Sharks can be the most frustrating team in the competition because they are jam packed with Springboks but seem to struggle on the field. They do however seem to perform better when they are the underdogs.
TIP: The Ulster team have only lost once at home this season although that defeat was in their last home match against Munster. The Sharks will welcome back Lukhanyo Am for this match after his sabbatical playing in Japan. He is the key to the Sharks defensive and offensive game and he will have his work cut out against the Irish international midfield pair of James Hume and Stuart McCloskey. The bookies have Ulster as favourites but I’m tipping the Sharks for the upset win. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting 4.00, Playabets 3.80 and Sunbet 3.90.
Ulster vs Sharks
- This is the first meeting between the sides.
Latest results for both teams
Ulster beat Edinburgh 16-10 in their last match while the Sharks beat the Connacht 41-21 in their last match.
The home team will look to keep the ball in hand as the Sharks have a very powerful pack and should dominate the set pieces. The visitors certainly have the advantage at scrum time with their all Springbok front row. They will be some key battles in the backline but Curwin Bosch up against Billy Burns looms large as the contest that could decide the match. If Bosch can ignite his potent backline then the Sharks could cause an upset. Both teams have excellent fullbacks in Mike Lowry and Aphelele Fassi, and both players are brilliant counter attackers. I am predicting a Sharks win by three points.
- Probable Starting XVs
15 Mike Lowry, 14 Rob Baloucoune, 13 James Hume, 12 Stuart McCloskey, 11 Ethan McIlroy, 10 Billy Burns, 9 Nathan Doak, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Nick Timoney, 6 Marcus Rea, 5 Iain Henderson (captain), 4 Kieran Treadwell, 3 Gareth Milasinovich, 2 Rob Herring, 1 Andrew Warwick,
15 Aphelele Fassi, 14 Werner Kok, 13, Lukhanyo Am, 12 Marius Louw, 11 Makazole Mapimpi, 10 Curwin Bosch, 9 Jaden Hendrikse, 8 Phendulani Buthelezi, 7 Henco Venter, 6 Siyamthanda Kolisi, 5 Gerbrandt Grobler, 4 Le Roux Roets, 3 Thomas du Toit (captain), 2 Mbongeni Mbonambi, 1 Retshegofaditswe Nche.
Odds for this bet
The best odds on the Sharks victory are as follows:
Odds comparison on the Sharks handicap :
The complete odds on the Sharks handicap:
Worldsportsbetting (+8.5) 1.90
Sunbet (+8.5) 1.87
Playabets (+8.5) 1.85
Predictions and Odds in details
Both teams have great driving mauls and score a lot of tries through their maul but in this match the team that can defend the maul best will come out on top. The back three of these teams have deadly runners like Rob Baloucoune from Ulster and Makazole Mapimpi from the Sharks therefore the kicking out of hand needs to be accurate or else these players will make the opposition pay. There are great odds on the Sharks upset win but if you are looking for a safety bet then I suggest the away team on the handicap. The best odds on this bet are as follows: Worldsportsbetting (+8.5) 1.90, Sunbet (+8.5) 1.87 and Playabets (+8.5) 1.85
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.