Sunday, February 25, 2024

Vodacom Bulls Rugby vs Connacht Rugby Predictions, Betting Tips, and H2H 25/11/2023


Vodacom Bulls Rugby vs Connacht Rugby Preview

Week six of the United Rugby Championship sees fourth-place Connacht visit the Bulls on Saturday, November 25, at 3:00 PM. Having played five games this season, no team in the URC has a perfect record. Every club has lost at least one game, leaving the door wide open across the league. It may be early days, but this match in South Africa is shaping up nicely.

The match will take place at the Loftus Versfeld Stadium in Pterioa, South Africa. The historical sports ground has a capacity of 51,762, and it’s the perfect venue for this week’s fixture. Connacht makes the 8,000-mile trip after a narrow victory over the Sharks, who sit bottom of the table. The Bulls started the 2023-24 season strong, but a second defeat of the season to Edinburgh last week has put the cat amongst the pigeons. Even with injuries to crucial players, the Bulls are the favourite to win this week.

Vodacom Bulls Rugby vs Connacht Rugby Head-To-Head and Key Stats

The Bulls and Connacht have only met twice since 2021 and they share the victories at one each. Both sides have won the home leg of the fixture, which does not bode well for Connacht this weekend. The first meeting between the sides was in 2021. Connacht hosted the Bulls, and they triumphed 34-7 after 80 minutes. The Bulls took an early lead with a try inside the first minute of the match. But a flurry of points from the home side meant the lead did not last long.

The second time these teams played was in South Africa at the end of September 2022. The Bulls once again scored early, securing two tries in the first ten minutes. A yellow card to Marco van Standen was not enough to see the visitors get a score in the first half. The second half started with another try for the Bulls, who led 28-0. Two quick-fire yellow cards provided a window for Connacht to get on the board, but it was too late in the day to change the result. The score finished 28-14, and it was a very one-sided affair for almost an hour of the game.

Before betting on the rugby, let’s examine how both sides have performed this season. The Bulls have won three games against the Scarlets, Zebre, and Cardiff. Last week the Bulls were on the road, and they lost 31-23 to Edinburgh. The game was tight in the first half with the Bulls leading by two points. However, it changed in the second half thanks to an early red card to Marcell Coetzee for a high tackle, followed by a yellow to Cameron Hanekom. With 15 against 13, it was easy for the Scottish side to build a commanding lead. The Bulls got it to 28-20, before a Viliame Sevaka Mata yellow card for Edinburgh. You would have thought there was enough time for a remarkable turnaround, but another yellow card for the visitors sealed the game.


Connacht won their last URC game, an away trip to the Sharks. The game finished with one point separating the sides, 12-13 at the full-time whistle. Connacht took an early lead and led 5-10 at the break. An early second-half yellow card for Oisin Dowling opened the game up and the Sharks led 12-10 after 52 minutes played. A penalty from JJ Hanrahan secured the victory for Connacht, condemning the Sharks to the bottom of the table in the United Rugby Championship.

Betting on the Bulls to bounce back seems the most likely option this week, but that does not mean it is the most rewarding. Plus, when you consider the ill-disciplined performance of last week, the Bulls will need to find another gear to stop this spirited Connacht side. They will have a home advantage this Saturday, but can they keep it clean and avoid going a man down again this weekend?

Vodacom Bulls Rugby vs Connacht Rugby Predictions

Looking at the betting odds available at Novibet, there is a clear favourite to win this fixture. Placing a €10 bet on the Bulls to win has odds of 2/15. That means your ten-euro wager will only return €11.33, less than two euros in profit. Connacht to win on the day has odds of 5/1, meaning you can win fix times your stake. A €10 bet on the away side will return €60, including your stake back. The least likely event in this game is a draw, which is 30/1.

If you were to look at the United Rugby Championship table, there are three points between the two sides. Connacht sits fourth in the division with 18 points on the board after five games. The Bulls are seventh out of the 16 teams in the URC, only five points away from the leaders. Connacht is a surprise package this season, narrowly winning their last three games by three points or fewer. The Bulls might be lower in the division, but they have outscored Connacht and have a superior point difference of +58.

Bulls Rugby players dodging a tackle

We predict that the Bulls are going to beat Connacht this weekend, thanks to the advantage of having a home crowd. Looking at the Bulls season so far, they have only played one game at home, a 63-21 demolition of the Scarlets. Connacht is a better side this year compared to the Scarlets, but do they have the defensive capabilities to hold off an enormous scoreline? We think the Bulls will win against Connacht, but Connacht will reduce their advantage to around 15 points at the final whistle.

In fixtures like this, it pays to wait until the game begins before placing a wager. Live bets are an exciting way to enjoy sports betting while reducing the risk of nasty surprises. As we have mentioned above, both sides have struggled with disciplinary issues during the past game week. The Bulls earned two yellow cards and one red in their defeat in Edinburgh. Connacht won their last game, but they made life harder than it needed to be against the bottom of the table. A yellow card to Dowling allowed the home side back into the game, and the Westerners only won by one point.

If you are determined to bet on the rugby before kick-off, a draw seems unlikely. While both teams need points, they will go into this game with different mentalities. The South African side is at home, playing in front of 50,000 adoring fans. They will want to put on a fantastic display and give the crowd something to cheer about. Connacht will know that Loftus Versfeld can be a fortress. Coming out of Pretoria with any points would be an excellent result, even with the fast start they have managed this season.

Placing a wager on the Bulls seems to be the safest bet, but it’s also one of the least rewarding. Signing up to Novibet and using your welcome bonus on the home side seems like a waste of a good promotion. Instead, you will need to look at other rugby markets to maximise your returns. In the section below, we dive into greater detail about the likely winning wagers this Saturday.

Vodacom Bulls Rugby vs Connacht Rugby Betting Tips

Betting on the Bulls to win this matchup has low returns at many bookies across Ireland. Instead, you can seek better odds by choosing the winning margin this weekend. The Vodacom Bulls winning by 15 or more points is worth 1/1, allowing you to double your money if they run rampant at home. If you think it will be a closer contest, the odds get better and better.

Besides betting on a full-time result, you can also examine the half-time rugby markets. There are several options to consider, including a three-way result. That means you can bet on Connacht leading at the interval, a draw, or the Bulls to win the first half. Having three options increases the returns across the board, but it also makes it more difficult to get it right. The odds of the Bulls winning the first half are 3/10, almost three times more rewarding than betting on the home side to win outright.

Ten members of the Connacht Rugby Team warming up

If you like the idea of betting on the halftime winner, you can also predict the winning margin after 40 minutes. The Bulls to lead by 15 or more points after the first half has odds of 18/5. A €20 bet on this market could return as much as €92 if the Bulls run riot in the first period of the match. If being this precise with your prediction sounds intimidating, there are easier rugby bets to consider. For any Rugby Union game at Novibet, you can wager on the odd or even combined score at half-time or full-time. A €20 bet on a combined even score at halftime would return €37.

It is still early in the Rugby Union season, but the contest is becoming even more exciting. Most teams will have their World Cup players back, which is great news for the South African sides. Their World Cup-winning squad enjoyed a few weeks off, but now we can see the strongest 15 take centre stage. However, not every player on both sides will be fully fit for this match. Check out the section below to find out which has injuries and who will start the game this weekend.

Vodacom Bulls Rugby Lineup

Speaking after the defeat in Scotland, the director of rugby, Jake White, had a lot to talk about. Firstly, he criticized the four-week tour for South African clubs. He then explained how the defeat at Edinburgh was more damaging than just the dropped points. Captain Marcell Coetzee will certainly miss the game on the weekend, following his red card on the weekend. Hooker Johan Grobbelaar and fly-half Johan Goosen picked up injuries in the bruising defeat. Grobbelaar looks the more serious with a hamstring problem, and Goosen is under concussion protocols.

  • Predicted Bulls Lineup: G. Steenekamp, A. van der Merwe, W. Louw, R. Vermaak, R. Nortje, N. Carr, E. Louw, C. Hanekom, E. Papier, J. van der Walt, S. Petersen, D. Kriel, S. Gans, S. de Klerk, and D. Williams.

Connacht Rugby Lineup

Like many other clubs in the United Rugby Championship, Connacht has a sizeable injury list. Starman Bundee Aki is edging closer to a return but is unlikely to feature in the next few weeks. Mack Hansen is recovering from an ankle injury and should return to action after this game week. Jack Aungier might be available this weekend as he follows the return-to-play protocols. However, Shayne Bolton, Shayne Jennings, Oisin McCormack, Gavin Thornbury, and the new signing Santi Cordero are yet to get a return date.

  • Predicted Connacht Lineup: D. Buckley, T. McElroy, F. Bealham, O. Dowling, J. Joyce, C. Prendergast, S. Hurley-Langton, C. Oliver, C. Reilly, JJ. Hanrahan, A. Smith, C. Forde, T. Farrell, B. Ralston, and T. O’Halloran.