Bet: Montauban -7.5
Second day of Pro D2.
Montauban beat painfully Carcasonne last week (16-12). The Montalbanais dominated but they made too many mistakes in the last move. They were very good in line-outs thanks in particular to Sergueev who stole several weapons. Last week, the USM could not count on its new players for licensing problems. This week, Luatua and Maninoa are in the team. Two strong reinforcements! Lilomaiava, Braedlin, Briscadieu and Florent Domenech are still blocked by the DNACG. Number 9 Jeremy Chaput is still injured. In his absence, it’s youngster Graou who is the starting star in the scrum.. He didn’t make a good game last week. The rest of the team is very strong with a big pack and a lively and powerful backline.
Biarritz beat Nevers (19-16) last week. They were dominated for most of the second half but, thanks to their good defence and the clumsiness of the Nivernais, they managed to hold on. The BO lost several key players this summer like Hamdaoui, Placines, Adriu Delai and Arrate. They recruited interesting players like Bouldoire, Lazzarotto, Aliouat, … Nevertheless, none has the level of the players who left…
But, for this match, there are many absent like Bouldoire, Knight, Penitoto, Elvis Levi, Singer, Tawalo … Moreover, the coaches decided to do without Bernard, Dubarry and Vakacegu. The team clearly lacks power. The three back rowers have the same tackler / scratcher profile but none can put the team in the lead by its power. At back, the recruits Lazzarotto and Ravuetaki join the starting XV. In the fullback it’s X. Lucu who will begin. He made a catastrophic game last week, in line with his last performances.
Biarritz’s scrum was destroyed by Nevers’. Against Montauban, it shouldn’t hold. At back also, the BO is weakened. I see Montauban win without too much problem. Right handicap : -12.5.