This weekend sees some massive rivalries reignited, with everything from the cricket pitch to the football ground delivering an epic encounter; so we’ve give a breakdown of what you need to know ahead of the fixtures and highlighted which games you can’t afford to miss this weekend, 20-22 January 2017:
South Africa v Sri Lanka (T20 cricket)
The always-electric Centurion crowd will play host to the first T20 encounter between South Africa and Sri Lanka, and it’s no doubt that it’ll line up to be a cracker. Having been thoroughly outdone in the Test series, Sri Lanka will be hoping the change of format will bring with it a change of fortune. For South Africa, this series has the air of a trial, to see which of its current crop of young players are ready to make the step up.
Ivory Coast v Congo (AFCON 2017)
Holders Ivory Coast head into the second game in Group C needing a win – or even a goal – to truly kick start their defence of the Africa Cup of Nations title. Wilfried Zaha and company struggled to create many opportunities in their 0-0 draw against Togo on Monday, and they can ill-afford such a dearth of attacking intent against group leaders DR Congo on their return to the Stade d’Oyem. The Leopards secured a crucial win over Morocco in their opening game and a further victory over the Ivorians could all but secure their place in the last eight.
Saracens v Toulon (European Champions Cup)
The last round of the Champions Cup group stages takes place this weekend with everything still to play for for both Saracens and Toulon at Allianz Park on Saturday. A Saracens win will guarantee the North Londoners a home quarter final, after the Men in Black secured their spot in the last eight last weekend. A Toulon win would see the French side themselves go into the knock out stages of the competition.
Munster v Racing Metro (European Champions Cup)
Munster are through to the last eight of the tournament for a record 16th time and a win over Racing92 at Thomond Park will guarantee them a home quarterfinal. Racing have been really poor in the European Cup, this after being in the final last year, but it is an epidemic that has stretched further than just Europe, even in the French Top 14 Racing have struggled – and especially away from home.
Manchester City v Tottenham (Premier League)
Manchester City will be involved in another tough contest as they welcome Tottenham Hotspur to Etihad Stadium on Saturday night. The Citizens have gradually slid out of the top for and are now resting on 5th spot with 42 points, 2 points above their city rivals Manchester United. Meanwhile, high-flying Tottenham will enter the game from a run of 6-game winning streak which includes a win over Conte’s Chelsea. Their last defeat was against Manchester United in December and they have been stronger since then.
What are your predictions for this weekend? Which teams will come out on top in the respective encounters? Let us know by tweeting us @MenStuffZA!