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Crunch Time For SA Teams In The URC

  • May 16, 2024
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Crunch Time For SA Teams In The URC

This weekend’s penultimate round of the Vodacom United Rugby Championship (URC) promises high drama as three South African franchises battle to keep their playoff dreams alive.

Bulls Charge for Home Advantage: Currently in fourth place, the Vodacom Bulls have their sights set on a top-two finish, securing both a home quarter-final and a potential home semi-final. However, victory in both remaining matches is crucial, alongside favorable results elsewhere.

Lions Chase Quarter-Final Berth: The Emirates Lions face a steeper climb. Trailing eighth-placed Benetton by four points and tied on points with ninth-placed Connacht (though significantly behind on points difference), they’ll need a strong showing.

Bulls Favoritism Tested: The Bulls’ home clash against Benetton in Pretoria appears favorable on paper. Yet, the Italians are determined to stay in playoff contention, buoyed by their last-gasp win over the Sharks. While the Bulls boast the league’s best attack, Benetton’s defensive prowess could be a challenge.

Lions Aim for Upset: A massive task awaits the Emirates Lions as they host log leaders Glasgow Warriors. With Glasgow clinging to a one-point lead over Leinster, they’ll be fierce competitors. However, the Lions’ morale-boosting victory over Cardiff and home advantage could inspire an upset. Statistically matched in attack, the Lions will need a repeat performance to pull off a surprise.

Stormers Face Familiar Foe: The DHL Stormers travel to Galway for a rematch of last season’s semi-final against Connacht. The hosts seek redemption after a heavy defeat to Munster, while the Stormers draw confidence from their win over the Dragons. Both teams boast improved attack and defense compared to last season, promising a tight contest. Connacht’s strong home record, with only two defeats, adds another layer of intrigue.

Sharks and Cardiff in Pride Match: The Sharks and Cardiff, both out of playoff contention, meet in Durban in a battle for pride. Though tied on points, the Sharks hold the higher ranking (12th). This encounter, likely a close affair, will be a chance to end their seasons on a positive note.

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