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Gallagher Premiership

PREVIEW: Gallagher Premiership returns as play-off scramble heats up

Shaun Goosen previews this weekend’s Gallagher Premiership matches as the scramble for play-off berths hots up, with a couple of teams still in contention for that vital fourth spot.

Owen Farrell of Saracens - Gallagher Premiership
Image Copyright - Steve Haag Sports

Shaun Goosen previews this weekend's Gallagher Premiership matches as the scramble for play-off berths hots up, with a couple of teams still in contention for that vital fourth spot.

Gallagher Premiership
Standings provided by SofaScore LiveScore

Friday 22 April

Newcastle 19/10 | Draw 20/1 | Irish 46/100 (20:45)

The Falcons can get further away from the bottom two with a win over Irish at Kingston Park on Friday. Newcastle are 11th on the standings, five points better off 13th-placed Bath. With tricky games against Sale, Leicester and Saints still to come, they’ll view this week’s game as a must-win to stay as far away from the bottom of the table as possible.

The Falcons will see this as a very winnable game, and with so many tough examinations on the horizon, they’ll be desperate to bag the points here. Back the home side.

Bristol 76/100 | Draw 20/1 | Gloucester 23/20 (20:45)

The Bears can bounce back from their European disappointment with a win against Gloucester at Ashton Gate on Friday. Bristol’s torrid season continued as they were knocked out of the Champions Cup by Sale in the round of 16, and things aren’t set to get any easier with Prem games against the Tigers and Exeter still to come. The Cherry and Whites still have an outside chance of making the Prem, playoffs, sitting seventh with seven points separating them from fourth with two games in hand.

I’m on Gloucester to come away with the win at Ashton Gate on Friday evening. They’ve more to play for and their hunger should see them over the line. 

Saturday 23 April

Bath 13/10 | Draw 23/1 | Saints 66/100 (16:00)

Saints can keep up the pace with the playoff chasers when they travel to The Rec to tackle Bath on Saturday. Northampton are fifth, four points shy of the fourth-placed Chiefs with a game in hand. Considering how close they are to featuring post season, you’d think they’d have too much in the tank for bottom-placed Bath.

There’s big value on Northampton here at 66/100. Definitely one of the weekend multuiples. 

Wasps 1/9 | Draw 28/1 | Worcester 58/10 (16:00)

Wasps and Worcester clash at the Ricoh Arena on Saturday with the visitors in real danger of finishing last. The Warriors are 12th with just three points separating them from Bath at the bottom. With 14-losses already this season, they may struggle to beat a red-hot Wasps side enjoying a four-game winning run.

The smart money’s on Wasps here, back them to claim the spoils without really having to get out of second gear. 

Quins 1/1, Draw 22/1, Tigers 17/20 (16:00)

‘Quins and the Tigers clash at The Stoop on Saturday in the first of two games of the weekend. Leicester are eight points clear at the summit of the standings and are unlikely to be caught with four-regular season matches remaining. That said, they’re not about to put their feet up against the defending champions with so much pride at stake. Quins will be hurting from being knocked out of the Champions Cup which could give them the edge in what will be an almighty tight contest.

This is a tough one to call, but I think Harlequins’ home advantage should see them through in what promises to be a thrilling encounter. 

Sunday 24 April

Saracens 34/100 | Draw 21/1 | Exeter 49/20 (16:00)

Saracens and Exeter meet at the StoneX on Sunday with plenty to play for. The second-placed hosts will want to avenge their defeat in the reverse fixture while keeping the morale high against a side they could well face in the semi-finals. Chiefs (fourth) are at risk of dropping out of the top four and cannot afford to give the chasing pack any scraps. Clashes between these two sides are always classics, but back the Sarries boys to get the job done on this occasion.

Saracens are rightly favourites here and should bag the win that will heap the pressure on Exeter in their hunt for the top four.

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