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Sunday, February 25, 2024

Bath Rugby vs Ulster Rugby Predictions, Betting Tips, and H2H 09/12/2023

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Bath Rugby vs Ulster Rugby Preview

This weekend, the European Rugby Champions Cup gets underway. The best rugby union teams compete from December to May, starting in groups of six before entering the knockout stage. This Saturday, December 9, at 3:15 PM, Bath Rugby hosts Ulster in the opening game for Pool two. With the games coming thick and fast over the next few months, starting with a victory seems important for both sides.

The match will take place at the Recreation Ground in Bath, an iconic stadium with room for almost 15,000 spectators on game day. Bath is second in the Gallagher Premiership Rugby this season, level on points with the Sharks after eight games. Despite starting strongly this season, Ulster enters this competition after losing consecutive games in the URC. Whatever happens this weekend, there is a long way to go before we get to the do-or-die games.

Bath Rugby vs Ulster Rugby Head-To-Head and Key Stats

The sides have met six times in the European Rugby Champions Cup (ERCC) in recent seasons, dating back to 2009. Even though there have been three home matches and three away legs, there has only been one winner. Ulster has won every meeting between the sides over the last 14 years and you can see more detailed stats at the Novibet betting platform.

Looking at the most recent match in January 2020, Ulster was the home side on that day. They took an early lead thanks to a Marcell Coetzee score inside five minutes. Ruaridh McConnochie responded for the visitors to level the contest 7-7 in the first half. Tom Ellis received a yellow card before the half-hour mark, but Bath held on to a tied game at the break. Ulster started the second half with two scores in the first seven minutes, and Bath took some time to respond. They got the game to within four points with 15 minutes remaining, but a red card to Ross Batty sealed the result 22-15.

Bath had the home advantage in 2019, and the close-fought match finished 16-17, even though the Northern Irish club was the resounding underdogs. The scoring began with scrum-half John Cooney capitalising on a Bath mistake to score an uncontested try. The second score was also by Ulster as they took advantage of a messy situation where a Bath player was down receiving treatment. Ulster’s pass landed short and bounced horribly, causing both sides some confusion. A quick kick forward gave Rob Little the chance to score. At 6-14, Bath found a way into the match with a Hamer-Webb score and a penalty converted by Rhys Priestland. With the score at 16-17, Bath had the ball in the 83rd minute, but a misplaced pass five meters out cost the home side the game.

If the previous meetings between these clubs are anything to go by, the game on Saturday will be close and exciting. However, Ulster enters the ERCC with a poor run of games, suffering defeats in Glasgow and Edinburgh. When on the road to Glasgow, Ulster let a 0-14 lead slip in the first half in a game that saw a yellow card to Kieran Treadwell. The Scots dominated the second half to finish 33-20 and were worthy winners. Last weekend, Ulster hosted Edinburgh, and they again let an early lead slip. With the score 12-13 after 40 minutes, the away side dominated in the second half. A late yellow card to Harry Paterson was not enough to inspire an unlikely revival, as the score finished 24-27.

Bath will fancy this contest, especially since they have a far more impressive league form this season. In the English Premiership, they sit level on points with the Sharks at the top of the table. Bath played the Sharks away at the end of November, a thrilling match that finished 11-9. While they could not get a result from the game, Bath certainly played better than anyone expected. They took this confidence into the game against Exeter, where they outplayed the opposition to the tune of 41-24. The match was tight until a 60th-minute yellow card for Stuart Townsend. Bath utilised the man advantage and scored 21 points while Exeter was a man down.

Betting on the European Rugby Champions Cup is always exciting. However, it will feel for Ulster that the cup has come around too soon as they try to bounce back from consecutive league defeats. The home side is playing some fantastic rugby in the English Premiership. Betting on Bath to continue this run seems the most likely outcome of this weekend.

Bath Rugby vs Ulster Rugby Predictions

It is common when betting on rugby union games for there to be a clear favourite. This week, Bath is the bookies’ choice and placing a bet on them to win has odds of 2/5. That means a €25 wager on the home side will return €35 if they win. Betting on an upset this week has odds of 7/4 if the team from Northern Ireland wins. Placing the same value bet on Ulster would return €68.75 at full-time. Betting on a tie in this game is worth 20/1, as draws are uncommon in the ERCC.

Predicting a winner from this match took more work than usual. Bath is in much better form this season, and they have the advantage of playing in front of their home fans. Plus, Ulster has been far from their best the past couple of weeks. Not only was the defeat to Edinburgh and Glasgow a surprise, but many expected them to beat Connacht away in week three of the URC. That leaves the NI side with three defeats this season, two on the road and one at home. It seems unlikely they will turn around the losing streak against Bath this weekend.

We predict Bath will win and finally get a victory against Ulster this weekend. As important a game as this is for the team from Northern Ireland, they will need to put in a monumental performance to get a result at Bath. Whichever way the game goes, only a handful of points will separate the two sides. Our prediction is Bath winning by three points or fewer after 80 minutes.

Bath Rugby player with hands on hips

If you are holding out for a live betting prediction on this game, be on the lookout for a yellow card. Bath has avoided the sin bin this season, but Ulster has played several games with a man down. Most of the time, losing a man has a catastrophic impact on the team’s performance. However, it seems the sides that go down to 14 more regularly gain valuable minutes covering for the gap in the field. Bath has not received a yellow card this season and could be vulnerable should they get one this game.

Bath Rugby vs Ulster Rugby Betting Tips

If you intend to sign up for a sports betting website, you will most likely receive a welcome bonus. Using your welcome bonus on the underdog is not a terrible idea. For starters, Ulster has great returns to pull off a miracle this weekend, and they have won all six previous games against the English side. Plus, they will want to stop the losing streak from the United Rugby Championship.

This is where handicap betting comes into play. In this rugby union match, the handicap is worth six points for both teams. If you bet on Ulster with a +6 handicap, they can win the bet without winning the game. If they finish within five points of Bath at the final whistle, Ulster wins the bet. For Bath to come out victorious using this wager, they must beat Ulster by six points or more at the final whistle. This is a better use of your welcome bonus compared to the match result.

Besides betting on the outright winner, there are dozens of other ways to bet on a rugby match. One of the most straightforward wagers available this weekend is the odd or even market. You can predict whether the total number of points scored will be odd or even at the end of the game. The same market is available for the halftime score, allowing you to get a payout before the 80th minute. Another market to consider is which team will score ten points first. In the two most recent Bath Rugby vs Ulster fixtures, Ulster scored ten points first.

Bath Rugby Team News and Lineups

Bath manager Stuart Hooper has managed injuries well this season, but a few players won’t return this weekend. Ted Hill had surgery after the first week of the new season and will return in the New Year. Last week, Elliott Stooke returned to Bath after a two-year absence playing for the Wasps, Bristol, and Montpellier. Stooke made over 120 appearances for Bath over five years and brings a boost to the Rec this weekend.

  • Bath Predicted Lineup: B. Obano, T. Dunn. T. du Toit, E. Stooke, C. Ewels, E. Richards, S. Underhill, J. Coetzee, B. Spencer, F. Russell, W. Muir, C. Redpath, M. Ojomoh, J. Cokanasiga, and M. Gallagher.

Ulster Rugby Team News and Lineups

Unfortunately for Ulster head coach Dan McFarland, the defeat against Edinburgh is not the only issue his side faces. Ben Moxham picked up a knee injury and is being assessed this week by the medical team. Will Addison will also miss the game this weekend after suffering a concussion. He will follow the return-to-play protocols and could miss one to three weeks. There is some good news, as players have resumed full training again. Michael Lowry, Rob Herring, Jake Flannery, and Iain Henderson could all return this weekend.

  • Ulster Predicted Lineup: S. Kitshoff, T. Stewart, T. O’Toole, K. Treadwell, I. Henderson, H. Sheridan, N. Timoney, J. McNabney, J. Cooney, B. Burns, J. Stockdale, S. McCloskey, J. Hume, R. Baloucoune, and S. Moore.
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