Can the Brumbies win Super Rugby?
The Brumbies win on Saturday night was overshadowed by a key injury to Christian Lealiifano (AAP Image/Dean Lewins)
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A month ago the Australian Conference was the laughing stock of Super Rugby. The top of the table was dominated by New Zealand and South African sides and the Australians had the Brumbies, who barely had enough points to be in the top six.
A month on, the Brumbies find themselves with one bonus point win off the top of the table after an impressive month with big victories over the Hurricanes and Waratahs.
This weekend when they play the Reds, a side which they have dominated with 16 wins from 19 encounters, they could be playing for more than the Australian Conference. They could be playing for top spot at the end of the season and home finals.
Sitting above them on the ladder are the Chiefs, Bulls and Stormers.
The Chiefs still have to play the Bulls and Crusaders at home and the Highlanders and Hurricanes away. It’s not beyond the realms of possibility that the Chiefs will lose one of these fixtures. In fact, it will be one hell of a mighty effort if they notch all of them.
The Stormers still have to play the Sharks, Cheetahs and Bulls away. These sides all gave the Stormers a fright at home and it will be a tough task for them to win all of these.
The Bulls have the Sharks and Chiefs to play away and the Stormers at home. Winning all three of these will be a tough ask for them.
The Crusaders are two points adrift of them with three home games and an away game against the Chiefs to come. You can probably pencil a win for all their home games and the Chiefs encounter should be a hard fought one.
The Sharks have a few tough ones in the Bulls and Stormers at home, but wins over those two sides will possibly give them the South African Conference
So if the Brumbies can continue their dominance over the Reds, and notch away wins over the Waratahs, Rebels and Force and a home win over the Blues, they can potentially secure top spot.
Given the ease of their draw and the tough draw of the three sides above them, they are a great chance to secure top spot providing they get over the Reds this weekend.
With a potential home semi-final and final, Jake White might do the unthinkable and take a cellar dweller from last season to the top of Super Rugby, further cementing his greatness as a coach.
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