Mitre 10 Cup 2020 Round 4 Predictions

It’s nice when you feel like you can sit down and breath. This feels like the first time in a few weeks that I’ve been able to do that. If you want to know what’s going on in the world of New Zealand Sport Radio then check out my Pulling Back The Curtains Series.

This weekend we’ll be getting around the grounds again. I’m at Bay of Plenty v Auckland and North Harbour v Tasman in the Mitre 10 Cup. Steven will be covering the Northland double header. Northland v North Harbour in the Farah Palmer Cup followed by Northland v Taranki in the Mitre 10 Cup. We’ll be bringing you our post match interviews as usual over on our Facebook page.

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You’re here for my Mitre 10 Cup predictions so let’s get straight into them.

Bay of Plenty v Auckland – Auckland by 7

Bay of Plenty haven’t hit their straps yet this season. We might only be 3 rounds in but that means we are nearly a third of the way through the regular season. Luckily for the Bay it doesn’t look like it’s going to matter too much as Harbour are going even worse, still a couple of wins are going to be needed soon.

Auckland have been flattering to deceive. 2 big wins but a loss to their only Premiership rival that they’ve played. Are they a good side that racks up lots of points or are they just flat track bullies? We’ll get a bit of a better idea this weekend as they face their second Premiership opposition even if it’s not the toughest.

New Zealand Sport Radio will be at this game bringing you match updates and post match interviews over on our Facebook Page.

Counties Manukau v Manawatu – Counties Manukau by 3

This is already looking like the wooden spoon playoff in the Championship. Yup this is must win in the same way that a cup final is. OK maybe that’s a little over the top but it’s a very big game for these 2 sides.

Counties just need to show some more patience. They had the opportunities last weekend but fluffed their lines close to the goal line. Manawatu weren’t even in the game last weekend and their confidence will have taken a big hit over the opening 3 rounds.

Which coach has managed to get some belief into his team could be the deciding factor this weekend.

Northland v Taranaki – Northland by 5

Northland are tracking well with their only loss to an All Blacks heavy Tasman in Round 2. Taranaki looked good when they had Beauden and Jordie but without them they lost the Shield last weekend to Otago. There’s often a shield hangover when a team has lost it. Add to that the trip up to Northland and this is looking like a home win.

New Zealand Sport Radio will be at this game bringing you match updates and post match interviews over on our Facebook Page.

Canterbury v Wellington – Canterbury by 3

Canterbury had an upset loss last weekend. There were a number of names that many of us did not recognise. A lot of us though that they’d just keep on rolling like the red and black machine has done in the past when they lost their All Blacks. It wasn’t to be though.

Wellington on the flip side transitioned well to their non-All Blacks team by beating BOP. Still years of experiencing Canterbury winning means it’s hard for me not to back them at home this weekend. This though is a true test of the Canterbury system and their depth.

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North Harbour v Tasman – Tasman by 20

Harbour are having a horror season with 3 straight losses and having Tasman come to visit is not going to make things any easier. At the moment it’s looking like Harbour are for the drop after losses to Canterbury, Waikato and Southland. Sure it was a tough start but to also lose their Championship crossover game puts them in a precarious position.

Tasman rolled on without their All Blacks and showed why they are the reigning champions and pre-season favourites.

New Zealand Sport Radio will be at this game bringing you match updates and post match interviews over on our Facebook Page.

Southland v Waikato – Waikato by 3

Southland are much improved and have already picked up wins over Hawke’s Bay and North Harbour along with a LBP to Bay of Plenty. They’ll come into this game with plenty of confidence and nothing to lose in their premiership crossover game.

Waikato came back to earth with a bump last weekend with their loss to Tasman after back to back wins. They’re still a decent side but are missing DMac and ALB. Strawbridge will be looking for a response from his side and if they are to be title contenders then this is a game they have to win.

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Otago v Hawke’s Bay – Otago by 5

It’s Ranfurly Shield time! Are we going to see it move for the third time this season? In my pre-season chat with the Otago assistant coach, he mention how their target this year is promotion. Will the Ranfurly Shield prove to be a distraction or an additional motivator?

A lot of us were down on Hawke’s Bay after their first round loss to Southland. However that’s because a lot of us were tipping them for promotion. Since then back to back wins over Counties and Canterbury and we have to say that they are back.

This is setup as a cracking game, we’ve already seen that a Shield challenge can take a lot out of a team (look at Taranaki) so will we see the same with Otago? How much did beating Canterbury take out of Hawke’s Bay? I’m going with home advantage but this could go either way!

Farah Palmer Cup

The Farah Palmer Cup is the women’s provincial competition here in New Zealand. Here are the round 5 fixtures and we’ll be covering the games in bold on our Facebook Page:

  • Northland v North Harbour – Northland by 40
  • Auckland v Bay of Plenty – Auckland by 7
  • Waikato v Counties Manukau – Counties by 5
  • Canterbury v Wellington – Canterbury by 5
  • Tasman v Hawke’s Bay – Tasman by 5
  • Otago v Manawatu – Manawatu by 5

Alice Soper’s 90 second round up of last weekend’s games:

Farah Palmer Cup tables:

Courtesy of http://www.provincial.rugby

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