Super Rugby 2012: 4 Teams Guaranteed to Lose in Round 2
Last week I went 4-4 in my guarantees.
The Hurricanes put up a bigger fight than anyone predicted, the Chiefs struggled against a superior pack, the Brumbies were perhaps lucky to grind out a win and Elton Janties showed that he is never to be counted out.
In fairness, no team is ever guaranteed to lose, or else no game would be worth playing. But these four teams will be facing a serious uphill battle to prove me wrong.
With that in mind, here are four teams I guarantee will lose in round two.
As with last week, I'll begin with the easy pick.
Yes, the Cheetahs are at home, but they're also playing against a Bulls outfit who showed that, while they may be on the decline, they'll still be a major scalp this year.
Heinrich Brussow may cause a few problems at the breakdown, but the Bulls will be far too good here.
As I alluded to last week, for the Chiefs' backs to fire, their forwards will have to give them a solid base to work from.
Both teams will be out to rebound from disappointing results, but I can see the Blues coming back harder.
Watch for them to score better than the Highlanders did and to hold on for the win.
The Waratahs were unlucky to come out with a loss last week. They'll be eager to bounce back so they don't fall off pace with the Reds early in the season.
Their pack should be too good for the Rebels' and should win even without Berrick Barnes.
Reports are saying that Kurtley Beale will also miss the game. His attacking flair will be a huge loss for the Rebels, who will be relying largely on their backs for wins this season.
In their 39-26 win over the Hurricanes, the Stormers lost Springbok flanker Schalk Burger to a knee injury that should see him sidelined for six to eight weeks.
The Sharks are a team on the rise and will be looking to take advantage of his absence.