Reds to beat the Rebels by 22

The only way the Reds can lose this game is if they've already got the Brumbies at the forefront of their minds.


The reality is that the Reds right now are far and away the best side in Australia. That's not just because they put the Brumbies to the sword last week, we did tip that by the way, put simply, the Reds defense right now is near on impenetrable.


In the last 3 weeks, the Reds have conceded just 15 points.


Defense coach Michael Todd replaced Peter Ryan post-COVID, Ryan went across to the Broncos, that hasn't worked out so well.


But for Todd, he's got the Reds defense humming, with excellent line speed and connection in their defensive live leading to some great physicality.


Now I'm not suggesting for one moment that the Rebels are easy beats, in fact you'll remember the Super Time draw between these two sides back in July when Reds Hooker Alex Mafi scored in the dying minutes. In their second clash of the season at Suncorp, the Reds took a fairly commanding victory, 19-3.



But if the Wallabies starting XV was to be picked tomorrow, the Reds probably have 6-7 starters, fair to say? Maybe even more. 3 or 4 from the pack, a further 2 or 3 in the backline potentially, that'd be about right and there would be others knocking on the door.


I say it every week, but it's the back row of skipper Wright, McReight and Wilson that really excites me, whether that's what we see in Wallabies colours at the end of the year, who knows. I am sure Michael Hooper will have something to say about that but these three blokes have been playing some ridiculous footy in 2020.



The Rebels? Definitely Koroibete gets the nod in Wallaby gold, but not sure there's any other definite starters? There is certainly plenty to like, but for everything the Rebels threw at the Reds last time at Suncorp, they couldn't break the wall of defense. Isi Naisarani looked like he scored a couple of times, ultimately he was denied.


Now, not suggesting that's the be all and end all, but it's a fair indicator for how these two sides match up.


The Reds forward pack appear dominant on what we've seen in the past few weeks, particularly at scrum time, and if they can lay the platform for Tate McDermott and James O'Connor to go to work, then the Reds backline can score points from just about anywhere.


Some of things Jordan Petaia did in contact last week were borderline freakish and Jock Campbell must have claims to be the most improved player in Super Rugby.


I can see the Rebels being ready to fight on Saturday night, perhaps they keep it tight early but ultimately it'll be the Reds that assert their dominance.


Reds by 22.

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