The Brumbies who secured the top of the Aussie conference already will face off against the Reds this weekend at home.
If I was a betting man I would put money on the Brumbies winning the title if you want to go with any other team than the Crusaders.
In a game that do not mean much result wise will be a great opportunity to build momentum for the playoffs.
The Reds are on 29 points and last in the Aussie conference and will want to end the season with a win so it will not be an easy game at all for the Brumbies.
I was impressed with the Reds this season and with a few close games going the other way they may as well have founded them in the hunt of a playoff spot.
Definitely a team to look out for next season and we will look forward to see them make the step up.
The Brumbies has made four changes to their side this week. It is also a huge milestone for Scott Sio who will be packing down in his 100th game for the Brumbies.
He will have Alaalatoa and Fainga’a next to him in the front row.
McCaffrey will rotate with Samu in the number eight jumper. Samu will cover on the bench with Brown back in the strating lineup.
We also see Valetini coming in for Cusack who gets a rest this weekend.
In the backline Wright gets a start on the left wing with the rest of the backs the same as the team that ran out against the Waratahs.
The Reds have made two changes to their side with Hockings starting at lock in place of Blyth, while Salakaia-Loto return after he had a rest last week.
Scott-Young shift to number eight for the match as we see Higginbotham going to the bench.
Although it is a good old local derby, one do think the Brumbies will just be too strong for the Reds.
Some Interesting Facts (OPTA)
- The Reds have won three of their last four Super Rugby games against the Brumbies after having lost their previous five games in succession against the team from the Australian capital.
- The Brumbies have won their last five Super Rugby games in a row; the last time they won more successive games within a single season was a six-game streak to close the 2007 campaign.
- The Reds have won only two of their last nine Australian derbies in Super Rugby and have lost their last three such fixtures on the bounce.
- The Reds have enjoyed an average of 17 minutes and 31 seconds of time in possession per game in Super Rugby 2019, more than any other team in the competition.
- Tevita Kuridrani (Brumbies) is the only player to have scored more than five tries (7) and made more than five try assists (6) in Super Rugby 2019.
Prediction: Brumbies with a win by 15 and more.
Brumbies: 15 Tom Banks, 14 Andy Muirhead, 13 Tevita Kuridrani, 12 Irae Simone, 11 Tom Wright, 10 Christian Leali’ifano, 9 Joe Powell, 8 Lachlan McCaffrey, 7 Jahrome Brown, 6 Rob Valetini, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Allan Alaalatoa, 2 Folau Fainga’a, 1 Scott Sio.
Replacements: 16 Connal McInerney, 17 James Slipper, 18 Leslie Leuluaialii-Makin, 19 Murray Douglas, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Ryan Lonergan, 22 Jordan Jackson-Hope, 23 Len Ikitau.
Reds: 15 Bryce Hegarty, 14 Jock Campbell, 13 Chris Feauai-Sautia, 12 Samu Kerevi, 11 Filipo Daugunu, 10 Matt McGahan, 9 Scott Malolua, 8 Angus Scott-Young, 7 Liam Wright, 6 Lukhan Salakaia-Loto, 5 Harry Hockings, 4 Izack Rodda, 3 Taniela Tupou, 2 Alex Mafi, 1 JP Smith.
Replacements: 16 Brandon Paengo-Amosa, 17 Ruan Smith, 18 Gav Luka, 19 Caleb Timu, 20 Scott Higginbotham, 21 Moses Sorovi, 22 Duncan Paia’aua, 23 Sefa Naivalu.