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Five things to watch out for this weekend

Five things to watch out for this weekend

It’s another busy weekend of rugby action with plenty of European domestic action and Super Rugby Round 10 – here’s five things to look out for from a British & Irish Lions perspective across the globe.

It’s a big day for Welsh bragging rights, with lots of internationals going head-to-head.

It’s another busy weekend of rugby action with plenty of European domestic action and Super Rugby Round 10 – here’s five things to look out for from a British & Irish Lions perspective across the globe.

Judgement Day in Cardiff

It’s probably the biggest event in Welsh club rugby at the moment, as Principality Stadium hosts back-to-back Welsh derbies on Saturday in Judgement Day IV.

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More than 65,000 tickets have been sold for the clashes between the Ospreys and Cardiff Blues, and then the Scarlets and the Dragons.

While there is plenty on the line from a Pro12 perspective, it’s also a big day for Welsh bragging rights, with lots of internationals going head-to-head.

The Blues will put their faith in their back row of fetchers – Sam Warburton, Ellis Jenkins and Josh Navidi – against the Ospreys.

In the unfamiliar position of No.8, 2013 Lions tourist Dan Lydiate will have a big job to try to slow them down.

The second game sees the long-awaited return of Wales centre Scott Williams in the Scarlets midfield going up against Taulupe Faletau, who is playing his final Dragons game on Welsh soil before heading to Bath next season.
 
Familiar foes do battle once more

Wasps and Exeter Chiefs played out one of the games of the season in the Champions Cup quarter-finals earlier this month, and do battle once again this weekend with a home Premiership semi-final on the line.

The Chiefs will have unfinished business at Sandy Park after losing by a single point to Jimmy Gopperth’s last-gasp conversion of a Charles Piutau try in Coventry.

One of the most intriguing battles will be in the centres, where Henry Slade and Elliot Daly go head-to-head.

The two England youngsters might link up on this summer’s tour to Australia, but they’ll be keen to lay down a marker in Devon.
 
Irish derby holds play-off key

While many eyes might be on Wales this weekend, there is a huge derby game taking place in Belfast this weekend.

Ulster host Pro12 leaders Leinster at the Kingspan Stadium, knowing that a win would keep them firmly in the race for a play-off spot.

To aid their cause, Chris Henry, Stuart McCloskey and Andrew Trimble are all back for Les Kiss’ team, but they will face a tough challenge.

Leinster have a few big names of their own back, not least fly-half Johnny Sexton.

His battle with Paddy Jackson should be a tantalising one ahead of their summer tour to South Africa.
 
French clash with home nation interest

On Sunday Champions Cup finalists Racing 92 will host Top 14 leaders Clermont in the pick of the games across the Channel.

While we don’t yet know the exact make-up of the teams, Welsh duo Luke Charteris and Mike Phillips could both feature for the Parisians.

And Clermont have a few big names of their own from the home nations, with Nick Abendanon, David Strettle and Jon Davies all potentially involved.

Bye bye Burger

Not so relevant for the Lions perhaps, but we feel we have to give a nod to Jacques Burger, who will hang up his boots after Saracens’ clash with Newcastle on Sunday.

The Namibian flanker will go down as his country’s most high-profile player of all time and few have given more on the field.

With his complete disregard for his body, Burger will finally hang them up after this weekend, he certainly deserves a good send-off.
 
And don’t forget, if you want to read about this weekend’s Super Rugby action, check out our Super Rugby Scout.

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