There are two big televised Aviva Premiership games on BTSport this week: Bath v London Irish on Friday night, followed by Northampton v Saracens on Saturday.
|London Irish (+19)||Handicap||10/11||Bet365, Titanbet|
Bath v London Irish
Title-chasing Bath are red hot favourites to beat London Irish on Friday night and continue their near-perfect home record. Only leaders Northampton have left the Rec with a victory this season and the Exiles, who lost by 10 points when the two sides met at the Madejski in November, are 14/1 with Sky Bet to cause an upset.
Bath are no better than 1/12 with Betfred, which means they have a huge handicap to overcome in the betting. Not since their first two home games of the campaign have they won by more than 19 at the Rec and only once in their last 16 league games has their winning margin gone beyond that mark. The visitors are one of the weaker teams in the Premiership, but they have won 4 of their last 7 and picked up bonus points against Northampton, Leicester and Quins in the other three.
Northampton v Saracens
Northampton’s charge at the top of the Premiership table has slowed in recent weeks but they can put significant distance between themselves and the chasing pack by beating Saracens at Franklins Gardens on Saturday.
The Saints were beaten at Exeter a fortnight ago to leave their place in the top two still in a little doubt, but they beat Sarries in last year’s Premiership final and also defeated them at Allianz Park earlier in the season. Refreshed after a two-week break, during which their opponents pushed themselves to the limit in a gruelling Champions Cup semi-final, Northampton can make home advantage count, despite the continued absence of George North as he awaits clearance to resume playing.
They thrashed Saracens here last season and have won eight of nine in the Premiership at home this term – back them to win this with a 4 point handicap.