The RaboDirect PRO12 Preview
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The RaboDirect PRO12 returns this weekend with a host of fixtures. RugbyLAD previews all six games, with everyone in action as we get ready for another season of the beautiful game… Who do you think will impress this year? Pat Lam has made some interesting signingswhile a host of top names have been lured by the riches of the Top 14, Welsh clubs in particular. Munster have been hit by the retirement of star players Ronan O’Gara and Doug Howlett, while Leinster look forward to life without Jonny and Brian O’Driscoll’s farewell season. All in all it’s shaping up to be another fantastic season of Rugby!
First up Scarlets Vs Leinster… Leinster have won their opening RaboDirect PRO12 encounter just once since 2003 and Scarlets boss Simon Easterby will no doubt be looking to take full advantage of the Leinstermen’s traditional slow starter on Friday evening. Leinster on the other hand might just be too much for the Scarlets to begin with. Prediction: Leinster by 3-7 points.
Next up Newport Vs Ulster… Newport Gwent Dragons director of rugby Lyn Jones insists his side’s RaboDirect PRO12 opener against Ulster is a great litmus test of their new ambitions. Great side, probably not great enough to pull off an upset… Prediction: Ulster by +7 or more.
Glasgow Warriors head coach Gregor Townsend has called on his side to turn Scotstoun into a fortress once again this season as they prepare to kick off their RaboDirect PRO12 campaign against Cardiff Blues on Friday. We reckon they’ll do the job against the Cardiff Blues anyway… Prediction: Glasgow by 7-12
Connacht tripped up in round one of the RaboDirect PRO12 last season with their 9-13 home defeat to Cardiff Blues. We don’t reckon the same will happen again on Saturday however. The new-look Pat Lam side should have enough to get past Zebre. Prediction: Connacht by 12-14
Munster have won their last five encounters with Edinburgh in all competitions, whilst the Scotsmen’s most recent triumph in Munster was at Thomond Park in October 2006 – their only previous win at Musgrave Park being way back in April 2004. We reckon Munster will do the job again this weekend. Prediction: Munster by +10 or more
Benetton Treviso begin the season at home for the fourth successive year and must be hoping to repeat 2012/13 when they beat Ospreys at Stadio Monigo 12-6. We reckon Treviso can nick it again this year at home. Prediction: Treviso by 3-7
Well LADS there you have it, our preview and predictions for this weekend opening round of RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures. Let us know your predictions in the comments below! CommentLADS