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Hurricanes vs Blues Predictions & Tips - Blues to edge it at Sky Stadium
- Hurricanes vs Blues predictions for Saturday’s Super Rugby Aotearoa fixture
- Match is being played at 06:05 GMT at Sky Stadium in Wellington
- The last 4 matches between these sides have seen the winners win by 12 or less
- I am tipping to the Blues to win by 1-12 points in Wellington
- Preview, predictions, stats & team news
Blues have won two of their last three matches against the Hurricanes by 12 or less (Getty Images)
Hurricanes vs Blues Predictions
The Hurricanes and Blues are very evenly matched heading into the season opener. It is the Blues defensive qualities that could give them the edge in this one, so I’m backing a narrow win by 12 or less.
- Hurricanes conceded the 2nd most points (213) in the 2020 Super Rugby Aotearoa tournament.
- Blues have won by 9 & 10 points in 2 of their last 3 matches against the Hurricanes.
- Blues have won 5 of their last 7 matches by 12 or less points.
Head to Head
The Hurricanes lead 11-2 over their last 13 matches against the Blues. The Blues however won two of their three matches in 2020.
Last time out, the Hurricanes beat the Blues 29-27 at home in Super Rugby Aotearoa.
The Hurricanes had an inconsistent 2020 by their usual high standards but still managed a third place finish in Super Rugby Aotearoa.
With five victories from their eight matches last season, the Hurricanes will carry some confidence over this time around. One of their most impressive performances came in a victory over the eventual champions, Crusaders.
Shoring up their defence will be the main priority this time around after conceding 213 points in eight matches in 2020. That was the second highest in the competition.
The Hurricanes have always possessed a potent attacking side, so getting the defensive side right will make them a real contender.
Hurricanes Injuries & Team News
The Hurricanes have not brought in any new names but utility back, Jonah Lowe has departed, as has outside back Chase Tiatia.
Since the departure of Beauden Barrett, the Hurricanes have struggled at flyhalf. Jackson Bachop is the likely starter this weekend but will need to produce consistent performances.
In the outside channels, the Hurricanes have plenty of quality. None more so that breakout player from 2020, Wes Goosen who has made try scoring look easy.
The Blues had a magnificent 2020 and finished second behind the Crusaders. They were superb defensively, conceding 149 points in seven matches which was one point more than the champions.
Other than the Chiefs who finished bottom, the Blues scored the least amount of tries (23). That will be of concern going into this season but they do have the personal to turn it around and challenge for the title.
The Hurricanes will be a tough opening challenge for the Blues, but against 2020's leakiest defence, they will fancy their chances.
Blues Injuries & Team News
The Blues have signed prop Nepo Laulala from the Chiefs and flank, Dillon Hunt from the Highlanders. Both of them offer additional depth to the Blues squad.
At flyhalf, Otere Black enjoyed a fantastic season in 2020. He will want to replicate that from this time around and push for international honours.
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