Challenge Cup: Cardiff Blues v Pau Preview

The Cardiff Blues and Pau will go head-to-head on Saturday the 21st of April at Cardiff Arms Park in the second of this weekend's Challenge Cup semi-finals.

There's a tasty Welsh-French affair on the cards this Saturday with the Cardiff Blues playing host to Pau. The home side are heavily fancied by the 'books but you can never write off an extremely unpredictable Pau outfit.

Cardiff Blues v Pau
Saturday 21 April
Cardiff Arms Park

To Win (80 Mins)
Cardiff 6/10
Pau 27/20

Cardiff Blues
The Welsh side have enjoyed a stellar season in Europe topping Pool 2 with five wins from their six round-robin phase fixtures. They also made light work of Edinburgh in the quarter-finals, running out 6-20 victors out in Scotland.

While the Blues have been in solid touch in Europe this season, they haven't been as impressive in the Pro14 losing 11 of the 20 fixtures they have played this season, which has left them needing a minor miracle to qualify for the next phase of the inaugural edition of the tournament.

They have been in decent form of late winning three of their last four Pro14 games, however, with their last victory being a mammoth 12-45 away win over the Southern Kings.

It has been a good year for Pau who are still in the hunt for both a Top 14 play-off berth as well as a Challenge Cup trophy. They currently sit second on the Top 14 ladder, only two points behind six place Castres.

The French club enjoyed an impressive Challenge Cup group phase winning all six of their fixtures on the way to topping a group that also featured fellow semi-finalists, Gloucester. They were also full value during the quarters' as they beat domestic rivals Stade Francais 33-32 in a frantic affair.

There recent domestic for is nowhere near as impressive as their European form with Pau losing their last two Top 14 fixtures; 19-18 to Bordeaux and 23-33 to lowly Agen. This is certainly not the form you want to be taking into a European final.

Verdict: Cardiff 6/10
Pau will give them a run but Cardiff resolute defence should see them to the final of this season's Challenge Cup.

Written by Darry Worthington for

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