The end of April brings with it no Fools, it’s crunch time locally and abroad on all sporting fronts.
In the English Premier League there is a full menu, with all sorts of tasty bits.
First up this afternoon is Tottenham against West Ham, a vital London derby, and the first between them at the new Spurs stadium.
As far as the top four go, the home team will be almost home and dry if they collect the points here. A win for Spurs is golden, after the week of turmoil where most contenders dropped vital points.
On the other end of the table, it’s a scramble for that last relegation spot. The game between already relegated Fulham and Cardiff is a last gasp chance for the visitors. I see visitors coming good to prolong the inevitable.
The other team lurking just above them is Southampton, who play Bournemouth, where I suspect the home team may slip up.
Then tomorrow’s roast serves up some crackling with your roast, with some crunch-time games. Title contenders Man City and three of the top six teams are in action.
The starter is Leicester against Arsenal. The Gunners have had a bad couple of games, with back to back losses in the past week. But I expect them to bounce back here, against a team who are no slouches at home.
Arsenal are priced at 15/10, and I expect them to do good on that price. Even though I’m backing the visitors, “both teams to score” is the safest bet here at 8/10.
Next up is the resilient Burnley hosting Manchester City. Burnley at home are tough. I see Burnley scoring, but City winning, so look into that double bet if you soek some value and want a punt on this game.
Last up it’s the main course, serving up Manchester United at Old Trafford versus fellow fourth-spot challengers Chelsea.
United have been in the wilderness after the Ole Gunnar honeymoon period, and may find themselves having some serious Monday blues should they slip up here.
I suspect a draw may be in order here as both teams at this point would rather that than dololo (nothing) and pin their hopes on the last two matches. A draw will suit all the fellas lurking around them, mara I think United may stop the rot temporarily here, through some Ole Ole Ole motivation.
On the local football front in our PSL, it’s also a race at both ends, just like in England. The Venda team Black Leopards face Maritzburg United, and the hosts will be desperate to get the three points to ensure their safety.
However, the boys from the Burra have nothing to lose! With a win here who knows, maybe the bones fall their way?
The other big game is SuperSport playing Wits. It’s the visitors’ last-gasp chance to stake their claim in the title race. Gavin and his students are on the hunt and it’s kill or be killed. This too will be tight, but I see the students getting lucky and sneaking a win.
Tomorrow, all eyes will be on Baroka facing AmaZulu, where the home team is desperate to distance themselves from the relegation spots.
AmaZulu are flying high after achieving that elusive 30 points, and Baroka never disappoint at home, so go Baroka at 14/10.
On the rugby front, we’re gonna swing the ball with quick hands through the games on show.
The Hurricanes play Chiefs first up and this should be a high-paced New Zealand derby.
Then the Waratahs host the Sharks, followed by the Stormers playing the Bulls in the big local derby, and lastly, the Jaguares face the Brumbies. All the games are touch and go, and can tip either way.
I fancy the home teams should all come right, but I’m hoping a switch in the Sharks’ line-up will give them the new mix they need to win.
I never thought Rob Junior would ever see the bench – finally! Now Curwin must Bosch on them.
Look out for a Rafa Nadal to win on a court in his name, on the dirt in Barcelona.@shabsgunner
Independent On Saturday