Super Rugby Preview

EWN Sport's Marc Lewis calculates all the permutations going into the final round of group matches.

Super Rugby


There is just one game that was played on Friday morning. The Hurricanes hosted the Chiefs in Wellington, what happened there?

What a game it was, for numerous reasons.

The Chiefs seemed a little offbeat for some parts, but credit must go to the Canes who did well to keep themselves in touching distance throughout the match.

It was a four point game heading towards the final minute of the match, but the Hurricanes stole the show thanks to a try in the 84th minute from Dan Coles.

It handed them a 28-25 win, boosting them into 4th place, but more importantly, the slip up allows the Stormers to leap frog them into first place on the log and bank a home playoff match.


That takes us to Saturday, where there will be six games lined up.

First up the Brumbies host the Blues in what should be a straight forward win for Jakes White's men.

The Brumbies should beat the Blues comfortably depending on whether they get a bonus point or not will determine whether they potentially finish in second or third place.

So it will be interesting to see how the rest of the fixtures pan out.


The Crusaders are up next against the Force at the AMI Stadium in Christchurch.

It's a game in which they cannot afford any slips ups.

Certainly not and they shouldn't either.

A win for the Saders could see them set up a potential meeting with either the Sharks or the Bulls, depending how their matches plan out.

For the two South African sides, they certainly won't be looking forward to the prospect of a knockout match down under in Christchurch.


The Reds are up next when they host the Waratahs and while the Tahs are out on contention, a bonus point win puts them right back in.

The reigning champs were out of sorts this year, many contributing that to the absence of Quade Cooper.

But a bonus point win will put them right back into contention on 58 points.

What's been so exciting about this season is just how exciting tight it's been between the top sides.


Next up the Stormers have a chance to bank themselves a home final after the Chiefs slipped up?

All that stands in their way is a spirited Rebels.

And now with the added incentive of being able to grab top spot on the log, one should expect nothing but a solid performance.

The top finisher will play the lowest qualifier which could potentially be the Reds, Sharks or Bulls.

The Stormers are the only local side guaranteed a spot in the knock out round.

The Sharks and Bulls though hold their fate in their own hands. They already occupy the final two playoff spots in the competition so wins should see them make it through.


Then two back to back local derbies as the Sharks host the Cheetahs and the Bulls host the Lions.

As we said earlier on it's in their hands, wins should be enough to put them into the next round and see three South African sides in the playoffs.

For John Plumtree and Frans Ludeke, they'll be expecting nothing but wins tomorrow.

Bonus point wins if possible. That would see both sides jump up to 59 points and guarantee their playoff spots.

The Sharks should be confident against the Cheetahs while the Bulls, looking at their opposition in the Lions, should have no doubt that a five pointer is definitely achievable.

Come Saturday night, we'll know exactly what to expect next week.