Hollywoodbets Sports Blog: Gallagher Premiership: Round 4 Preview

Gallagher Premiership: Round 4 Preview

Alex Craig of Gloucester Rugby attempts to charge down the box kick of Danny Care of Harlequins

Shaun Goosen previews this weekend's four festive Gallagher Premiership fixtures. 

Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports

Two women looking excitedly at cellphone

Saturday 26 December 

Harlequins v Bristol
The Stoop

To Win Match
Harlequins 11/10
Draw 18/1
Bristol 15/20

Harlequins will look to end their two-match losing run when they host the Bristol Bears at the Stoop on Saturday.

Quins were beaten 21-7 by Munster and then 49-7 by Racing 92 in the opening two rounds of the Champions Cup. Given the shot and intense nature of the tournament this season, those results may persuade Paul Gustard and his coaching staff to prioritise the Premiership going forward.

The Bears, meanwhile, bounced back from their 38-51 loss against Clermont to beat Connacht 27-18. Pat Lam’s talented squad are third on the Premiership standings, level on points with the fifth-placed Quins. They will be confident of claiming a win here and should narrowly do so.

Verdict: Bristol 15/20
The bookies make Bristol favourites this weekend. Rightly so, get on!

Exeter Chiefs v Gloucester 
Sandy Park

To Win Match

Exeter will want to bounce back after their disappointment in Europe with a win over Gloucester at Sandy Park.

The Chiefs’ eagerly anticipated matchup with Toulouse was cancelled last weekend following a Covid outbreak in the English club’s dressing room. The Top 14 giants were awarded a 28-0 win. You can bet Rob Baxter’s men will want some Premiership respite this weekend.

The Cherry and Whites snuck past Ulster last week after a hammering by Lyon. Coming into the toughest fixture on the domestic rugby calendar, Gloucester may find themselves outgunned here.

Verdict: Exeter
The Chiefs should have very little trouble dispatching Gloucester.

Northampton Saints v Worcester Warriors
Franklin’s Gardens

To Win Match
Saints 7/20
Draw 20/1
Worcester 9/4

Northampton come out of a disappointing European run looking to claim a first win of the season against Worcester at Franklin’s Gardens.

The Saints have played five matches this campaign and have yet to taste victory. They are bottom of the Premiership standings and head into this clash following consecutive Champions Cup defeats to Bordeaux and Leinster. That said, they may turn the tide against a Warriors team that hasn’t offered much recently.

Worcester’s sole win came in a one-point defeat of London Irish at the Sixways. They may find the going tough against a Saints side who will want it more.

Verdict: Northampton 7/20
Saints all the way here. 

Sunday 27 December

Sale Sharks v London Wasps
AJ Bell Stadium

To Win Match
Sale 9/10
Draw 18/1
Wasps 9/10

The clash of the round pits Sale against Wasps at the AJ Bell Stadium on Sunday.

The Sharks come off the back of two consecutive losses to Toulon and Edinburgh in the Champions Cup. These results followed the shock resignation of director of rugby Steve Diamond, and it’s clear the Manchester-based club are still slightly rattled.

Meanwhile, Wasps collected the maximum 10 log points on offer from their first two European games of the season after winning just one of their opening three Premiership matches. They are flying high and should use that momentum to bag another win here against a discombobulated Sale side.

Verdict: Wasps 9/10
In what is likely to be the closest match of the weekend, Wasps' form that they bring into this match from continental competition should see them through. 

Written by Shaun Goosen. 

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