Round 8 of Super Rugby Australia will feature two crucial matches, beginning with the lowly Force hosting finals hopefuls the Queensland Reds on Friday night.
On Saturday night, the Waratahs will travel to Canberra, where the competition-leading Brumbies will attempt to halt their resurgence.
We’ve previewed both games, and you can find our Super Rugby Australia Round 8 tips below.
The Western Force will have their hands full with the Queensland Reds on Friday night.
They’ve shown plenty of character and fight, particularly for a side that hasn’t contested top-line Rugby for a couple of seasons now, but a win still eludes the Force.
Round 7 saw a little more of the ‘same old’, with some good passages of play apparent, but too great a class difference between themselves and the Waratahs.
The Reds meanwhile bounced back from Round 6’s heavy loss to the Waratahs with a comfortable win over the Rebels.
As expected, it was an arm-wrestle early, but a couple of tries to Jordan Petaia and Brandon Paenga-Amosa before the break put the Reds into control and laid the foundation for the tough win.
The result saw them cling onto second place, and they will be eager to take another big step towards the finals with another positive result here.
Everything is on the line for the Reds and if they are a legitimate trophy hope, they’ll win this comfortably.
Just can’t wait for this one!
One of Australian rugby’s better rivalries will be renewed in the nation’s capital on Saturday night and if the last couple of weeks are any indication, it’s going to be an absolute ripper.
The Brumbies have again been the benchmark in Super Rugby Australia and enter this match on top of the ladder and refreshed, following a week off.
Round 6 did result in their first loss of the season, but they are a well-drilled unit and are sure to have learned plenty from the hit-out.
The Waratahs were typically slow from the blocks this season, but the week off in Round 5 appears to have switched them on, and they followed up their thrashing win over the Reds with another comfortable victory over the Force last week.
This is definitely an acid test for the Waratahs and a win would not only be enormous for their confidence, it would keep them well and truly in the finals framework.