The first action in the final round of the regular Super Rugby season is a Round 19 New Zealand derby between the Chiefs and the Hurricanes in Hamilton on Friday.
Chiefs v Hurricanes, Friday 13th July, Hamilton, KO 09:35 (South African time)
Referee: Mike Fraser
Assistant Referees: Richard Kelly, James Doleman
TMO: Ben Skeen
The Chiefs came through last week’s home fixture against the Brumbies with a 24-19 victory, a result which kept them in third spot in the New Zealand Conference, 5 points behind the second place Hurricanes. As it stands they are on course to play the Canes in Wellington in the first round of the play offs although if the Chiefs were to win this one by 23 points or more they would host next week’s match.
The Chiefs overall record now comprises of 10 wins and 5 defeats and they have won 5 of 7 home games with the losses coming against Jaguares and the Crusaders. In New Zealand derby matches the Chiefs have won 4 and lost 3. They were very impressive in hammering the Highlanders 45-22 in a game staged in Fiji 2 weeks ago whilst in Hamilton earlier in the season they have lost 34-20 to the Crusaders (Round 16) and they beat the Blues 21-19 (Round 8) and the Highlanders 27-22 (Round 7).
The Canes snapped a 3 match losing streak with a 42-24 victory over the Blues in Wellington last week but their chances of overhauling the Crusaders for top spot in the overall standings had long since gone. Their overall record reads 11 wins alongside 4 defeats and all 4 of those losses came away from home.
The Canes have won 5 of 7 NZ derby matches, 4 of which were staged in Wellington and they also won the first meeting with the Chiefs (25-13) in Round 9. They have come unstuck twice away from home in derby matches this season, going down 30-14 to the Highlanders in Dunedin in Round 16 and 24-13 to the Crusaders in Christchurch in Round 15.
Chiefs – 15 Solomon Alaimalo, 14 Toni Pulu, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Charlie Ngatai (c), 11 Shaun Stevenson, 10 Marty McKenzie, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Jesse Parete, 7 Mitch Karpik, 6 Lachlan Boshier, 5 Tyler Ardron, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Liam Polwart, 1 Sam Prattley.
Subs: 16 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 17 Karl Tu’inukuafe, 18 Jeff Thwaites, 19 Michael Allardice, 20 Liam Messam, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Tiaan Falcon, 23 Johnny Fa’auli.
Hurricanes – 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 13 Wes Goosen, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Blade Thomson, 7 Sam Henwood, 6 Brad Shields (c), 5 Sam Lousi, 4 Michael Fatialofa, 3 Jeff To’omaga-Allen, 2 Ricky Riccitelli, 1 Toby Smith.
Subs: 16 James O’Reilly, 17 Chris Eves, 18 Ben May, 19 Gareth Evans, 20 Reed Prinsep, 21 Finlay Christie, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Julian Savea.
Recent Head to Head (any venue)
2018 Wellington Hurricanes 25-13 Chiefs (Tries 3-1)
2017 Wellington Hurricanes 14-17 Chiefs (Tries 2-2)
2017 Hamilton Chiefs 26–18 Hurricanes (Tries 2-2)
2016 Wellington Hurricanes 25-9 Chiefs (Tries 3-0) (semi final)
2016 Wellington Hurricanes 27-28 Chiefs (Tries 4-4)
2015 New Plymouth Chiefs 13–21 Hurricanes (Tries 1-3 )
2015 Wellington Hurricanes 22–18 Chiefs (Tries 3-2 )
2014 Hamilton Chiefs 24–16 Hurricanes (Tries 2-1 )
2014 Wellington Hurricanes 45–8 Chiefs (Tries 6-1 )
2013 Hamilton Chiefs 34–22 Hurricanes (Tries 4-3 )
2013 Wellington Hurricanes 12–17 Chiefs (Tries 0-1 )
Chiefs +3.5 points at 9/10 Sunbet, GGGaming
Hurricanes -2.5 points at 9/10 WSB
Note, odds quoted are an average of what was available at the time of last update but are subject to change.
This Chiefs have been playing down an all assault on a winning margin that would see them host next weeks play off and indeed given some key men are rested I think they will battle to hold the Hurricanes
Minus handicap looks good to me.
Bet: 6 units Hurricanes -2.5 points at 9/10 WSB
Remember you can have your own say on all this week’s matches on our discussion forum