Aviva Premiership: Week 2 Preview

The second round of Aviva Premiership action gets underway this Friday evening.

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The Aviva Premiership got off to a cracking start last weekend with some real quality rugby being produced. Gloucester’s nail-biting win over defending champions Exeter set the tone for the opening round, which also saw Saracens absolutely annihilate Northampton at Twickenham.

The opening round also proved to be extremely profitable for yours truly with London Irish and Gloucester providing solid returns on very small outlays. Here’s hoping we get another weekend of super entertaining rugby and a few winning bets.

Sale Sharks v Newcastle Falcons | Friday 8 September | AJ Bell Stadium | 20:45

To Win (80 Mins)
Sale 9/20 | Draw 20/1 | Newcastle 37/20

The Sale Sharks and Newcastle Falcons collide in the first of this weekend’s fixtures. The Sharks come into this one off the back of an opening day defeat to Wasps while the Falcons make the trip having beaten Worcester 35-8.

Verdict: Sale 9/20
They may be coming into this one off the back of a 15-point defeat to Wasps but Sale did look decent with ball-in-hand during that fixture. I’m expecting their attacking prowess to see them to victory here.

Bath Rugby v London Saracens | Saturday 9 September | Recreation Ground | 15:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Bath 15/10 | Draw 20/1 | Saracens 11/20

Despite losing talismanic pivot George Ford during the off-season Bath still managed to impress in the opening week of their campaign as they beat Ford’s new side, the Leicester Tigers, 23-27. Saracens also got their campaign off to a very impressive start as they ran a solid looking Northampton side ragged at Twickenham. What made ‘Saries 55-24 victory even more impressive was that they were missing a few of their England internationals such as Owen Farrell and Mako Vunipoala.

Verdict: Saracens 11/20
This should be a much trickier test for ''Sarries than last week’s clash with Northampton but I think it’s one they'll come through. My advice is to get on the straight away win unless you are offered a plus handicap over nine points. If the ‘cap comes out at anything over nine, then the plus is the way to go.

Exeter Chief v London Irish | Saturday 9 September | Sandy Park | 16:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Exeter 1/10 | Draw 30/1 | Irish 11/2

Defending champions Exeter will be looking to bounce back from their opening day defeat to Gloucester when they play host to promoted outfit London Irish, who got life back in the big time off to a sensational start by beating Harlequins 39-29.

Verdict: Exeter 1/10
I had a feeling that Irish would deliver the goods last week and they certainly did. I don’t think we’ll get a repeat of that magic here though as Exeter will be determined to bounce back from last week’s narrow defeat. They may not offer great value at 1/10 but the Exeter win is probably the banker of the weekend.

Harlequins v Gloucester | Saturday 9 September | Twickenham Stoop | 16:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Harlequins 9/20 | Draw 20/1 | Gloucester 19/10

‘Quins will be looking to bounce back from their shock defeat to London Irish while Gloucester will be looking to build on their impressive victory over Exeter when the two sides collide at the Stoop this Saturday afternoon. The hosts really looked susceptible on defence last week and will need more cohesion from their back division if they are to get one over a Gloucester side that has some deadly backs.

Verdict: Gloucester 19/10
The Cherrie and Whites really did look good last week. The most impressive thing about their display was how big an impact their bench, including Ruan Ackermann, made. I fancy the reserves to see them over the line again.

Northampton Saints v Leicester Tigers | Saturday 9 September | Franklin Gardens | 17:30

To Win (80 Mins)
Northampton 9/10 | Draw 19/1 | Leicester 19/20

The Saints and Tigers square off in Saturday’s final fixture. Both teams got their campaigns off to less than impressive starts with the Saints being hammered 55-24 by Saracens and the Tigers going down 23-27 to the Bath on their own patch.

Verdict: Northampton 9/10
This is a tough nut to crack as both of these teams are more than capable of winning this one. I probably won’t be having a strike on this one, but if I was forced to I’d go with the home side.

Worcester Warriors v London Wasps | Sunday 10 September | Sixways Park | 16:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Worcester 47/10 | Draw 28/1 | Wasps 1/7

The Warriors will be looking to bounce back from their insipid display against Newcastle when they play host to the flair gods themselves, London Wasps. The visitors come into this one off the back of a virtuoso attacking display against Sale where they ran out 50-35 victors.

Verdict: Wasps 1/7
This is a points punter’s dream and I recommend leaving the ante-post stuff and going on an over points hunt via the Hollywoodbets Live In-Play platform come kick-off. If you want to go the ante-post route, the Wasps win at 1/7 is an absolute gift.

Written by Darry Worthington for @Hollywoodbets.net

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