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Highlanders vs Chiefs Betting Tips – Highlanders can upset the odds in Super Rugby Aotearoa opener

Highlanders backed in the handicap market at Forsyth Barr Stadium
Highlanders vs Chiefs 2019
Highlanders can get close to the Chiefs as Rugby gets back underway (Getty Images)

Highlanders vs Chiefs Preview & Betting Tips

The Highlanders and Chiefs clash on June 13 2020 in the very first Super Rugby Aotearoa match. With COVID-19 putting pay to the 2020 Super Rugby season New Zealand will be the first major country to offer us live rugby.

Before the break the Highlanders struggled for form and consistency but a return of some star players and a chance to regroup could see them cause the Chiefs some problems.

Highlanders Form

The Highlanders did not have the best time time during the 2020 Super Rugby opening seven rounds. With just one win they were heading towards a bottom half finish. The break may have done them plenty of good with a chance for injured players to make a return while others have an opportunity to rectify their form.

A 38-13 defeat to the Bulls at Loftus Versfeld in their final game before the break would have had some key players taking a hard look at themselves. The quality in the Highlanders ranks, especially scrumhalf Aaron Smith belies the ability the team has shown.

Could the Highlanders return a stronger side? They almost certainly will, it is hard to get worse than they were. That alongside the fact that no team has played in three months should ensure this match is a scrappy affair. I foresee a close encounter with the Highlanders solid value on the +10 handicap.

Chiefs Form

After a stunning start to the 2020 Super Rugby season the Chiefs tailed off in the final few weeks. They were reasonably disappointing in 2019 but the early signs were that the Chiefs of old had returned - whehter that remains the case we will wait and see.

A home 27-24 defeat to the Hurricanes at the FMG Stadium prior to the break would not have inspired much confidence in the Chiefs supporters. Two weeks prior to that they suffered a 27-14 loss to the Brumbies who fielded a very inexperienced side due to the amount of injuries.

Sandwhiched between those defeats was a comprehensive 51-14 victory over the Waratahs in Sydney. The Tahs' were having a terrible season and are not as strong as they have previously been, so that result was no surprise.

Make no mistake, the Chiefs are a very talented outfit and can turn it on at any time. With it being the first week back I just believe that they'll struggle to be at their best against a Highlanders side desperate to prove themselves.

waikato chiefs 2020 super rugby
The Chiefs have lost two of their last three matches (Getty Images)

Highlanders vs Chiefs Head to Head

The Chiefs have a 3-1 win record in the last five matches against the Highlanders with one draw. Last seasons match ended in a 31-31 tie at Forsyth Barr Stadium.

Highlanders vs Chiefs Betting Odds

The Highlanders are heavy outsiders to win at 4.20 with the Chiefs priced at 1.25. A draw can be backed at 23.00.

It is the handicap is set at 10 points and pays 1.90 for either team to cover it. More markets such as try-scoring markets will be available closer to the time of kick off.

Highlanders vs Chiefs Match Up

The Highlanders have struggled in 2020 with only one victory and a draw from their opening six Super Rugby fixtures. The key here is that the extra time has given injured players time to recuperate. I expect the Highlanders forwards to perform much better with players returning.

The Chiefs started the season like a house on fire but slowed down in their last three matches. The Chiefs forwards will need to get gain line dominance as well as compete in the set pieces, something they failed miserably at in their last few matches.

highlanders rugby
Aaron Smith is the key to the Highlanders turning around their fortunes (Getty Images)

Highlanders vs Chiefs Stats

  • Highlanders drew with the Chiefs 31-31 the last time they met at the Forsyth Barr Stadium (2019).
  • Highlanders have covered the +10 handicap in 11 of their last 12 matches against the Chiefs.
  • Chiefs have lost 2 of their last 3 Super Rugby matches.

Highlanders vs Chiefs FAQ

Where is the Highlanders vs Chiefs Super Rugby Aotearoa match being played?

The Highlanders vs Chiefs match is being played at Forsyth Barr Stadium in Dunedin, New Zealand.

When is the Highlanders vs Chiefs Super Rugby Aotearoa match being played?

The Highlanders vs Chiefs match is being played on Saturday 13 June 2020 at 05:05 GMT.

What is Highlanders vs Chiefs Head to Head record?

The Chiefs have won three of their last five matches against he Highlanders along with one draw and one defeat.


After a three month break the players are unlikely to be anywhere near their best. The Highlanders have the quality to turn their form around and I believe they offer value to cover the +10 handicap with a small layout on an upset victory.

Best Bet: Highlanders +10 Points Handicap Market @1.90 at BetMGM - 5 Units
Outright Winner Tip: Highlanders Win Market @4.20 at PlaySugarhouse Sport - 1 Unit

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