Sheffield Predators vs. Yorkshire Rams
An intriguing battle in prospect as two of the division's three teams from the White Rose County face off on Sunday.
Sheffield put a solid beating on West Coast in their first game at the top level, and will be relishing the opportunity to test their abilities against a team that we had pegged as the third best team in the division pre-season.
It's been a mixed bag so far the Rams, scuppering Coventry last weekend after a couple of defeats to open their season. It's a cliché to talk about their solid defence, but it'll be in sharp focus against the Predators' high octane offence. They'll probably need to score three times to win this one.
Sheffield to win by a score
Berkshire Renegades vs. East Kent Mavericks
Following their two scores loss to the Aztecs, the Renegades will be looking to gain their first victory of the season when they take on the East Kent Mavericks. If the Renegades are hoping to claim their first win of the season, they’ll need to perform better than last season. Two losses against the Mavericks last season should provide Berkshire with enough motivation heading into this game.
The Mavericks got off to a good start this season when they defeated South Wales Warriors 35-26 to show that their high scoring offence is still running well. If the Mavericks offence can find their groove again, then they should extend their winning streak over the Renegades for another season.
Mavericks by two scores
Mavericks by two scores
National League Central
Shropshire Revolution vs. Manchester Titans
Two favourites for the division in preseason and two teams coming off the back of disappointing defeats face off to potentially get their seasons back on track.
Shropshire are very much a team in transition but one who impressed in a tough division last year. With the restructure they've found themselves in a tough division this year too and so it proved when they faced off against a much improved Merseyside Nighthawks teams a few weeks ago. Previous to that they were undefeated and will be looking to get another win here but it will be tough.
Manchester were atop our Power Rankings before their 30-14 defeat at the hands of the dark horse Chester Romans side last week. They will want to put that behind them as soon as possible. They've had injury problems and it is often forgotten that they are a young squad that has had to put a lot of turmoil behind them. Head Coach Nigel Dias is a Britball legend and there is some experience in the side, such as first string quarterback Alan Mead, and it will be up to them to guide the rest of the squad back from the Romans loss.
Manchester Titans to win by 2 scores
National League North
Edinburgh Wolves vs. Gateshead Senators
The Wolves have been poor the first year off their playoff campaign of last year, sitting at 1-2. They'll have their work cut out making the playoffs again this year in a tough division but if they are to do that then they will have to beat the big teams in the division, starting with Gateshead this weekend.
The Senators are a funny team to predict. They're a small squad, with some of their players often having to play ironman. But they're a really resilient group of guys and they don't like losing (who does?). They refuse to give up and play to the final whistle every match and their defence is one of the best drilled in the UK. However they don't score many points on offence and it has been their downfall at times over the years.
However they should have enough in them to beat the Wolves this weekend.
Gateshead to win by one score
National League South
Oxford Saints vs. Solent Thrashers
Following their postponement earlier in the season, the Saints and Thrashers will finally square off this season.
The Saints began their season with a W following a close thought victory over the previously 0-2 Bournemouth Bobcats. With rumours that the team have lost a number of key figures from previous years gone by (as we said, they’re rumours), the Saints may struggle when they come up against opposition like the Solent Thrashers.
We predicted Solent start the season 0-1, how wrong were we?! The Thrashers ran out comfortable winners against the Farnham Knights and look like they could be one of the teams to beat in the National League this season. With their experience from playing in division one last season, the Thrashers should be one of the favourites to make the post season.
Solent to edge it by a score.