Pro 14: Ulster vs Cheetahs Preview

We preview the opening Pro14 clash when Ulster host the Cheetahs on Friday the 1st of September, Belfast.

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Ulster vs Cheetahs | 1 September | Kingspan Stadium, Belfast | 19h35

To Win (80min)
Ulster 3/10| Draw 25/1 | Cheetahs 5/2 * Expected odds

Ulster
Irish club – Ulster will host the Cheetahs in the opening match of the Pro 14 season. Ulster finished fifth place last season and with their new signings look prepared to try improve last season’s form. But the Irish side will have to fill the void left by Ruan Pienaar as he leaves for Montpellier. But they’ll still have the high converting Paddy Jackson.

Signings

John Cooney (Connacht)
Christian Lealiifano (Brumbies)
Jean Deysel (Sharks)
Schalk van der Merwe (Southern Kings)

Leaving

Ruan Pienaar (Montpellier)
Roger Wilson (retired)
Franco van der Merwe (Blues)
Ricky Lutton (released)

*Ulster Team TBA

Cheetahs
The Cheetahs will play their maiden Pro 14 tournament against some of the toughest Northern hemisphere teams. The team have played rugby all year and will be ready for the new challenges that await them in Europe. Their weekend opponent team will feature a handful of South African players, but the Cheetah must stick to their running brand of rugby, as that is the edge they'll need over Ulster.

Cheetahs’ 28-man Squad: Charles Marais, Ox Nche, Joseph Dweba, Jacques du Toit, Torsten van Jaarsveld, Erich de Jager, Aranos Coetzee, Tom Botha, Justin Basson, Armandt Koster, Reniel Hugo, Rynier Bernardo, Paul Schoeman, Henco Venter, Gerhard Olivier, Niell Jordaan, Shaun Venter, Tian Meyer, Zee Mkhabela, Cecil Afrika, Robbie Petzer, Makazole Mapimpi, Ali Mgijima, William Small-Smith, Rayno Benjamin, Rosko Specman, Sergeal Petersen, Clayton Blommetjies

Verdict: Cheetahs 5/2 *Expected odds
I'll take the Cheetahs for an outright win at 5/2, following their convincing performances throughout the Super Rugby and the Currie Cup. Rory Duncan will want to make an impression with his team in their opener in Belfast. The Cheetahs backline will be in full force with Makazole Mampimpi, William Small-Smith,  Rosko Specman, and Sergeal Petersen all fit to play. This match will be won in the backline so I'm going with the explosive Cheetahs. 

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Writtern by Lungelo Mdladla for Hollywoodbets

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