Get up to Scratch for the Aviva Premiership 2015

As we edge closer to the climax of the Aviva Premiership, there’s plenty to reflect on from the season gone by. With two weeks to go until it reaches its conclusion at Twickenham, we’ve got familiar faces and new revelations, dominant front runners and teams still battling for a play-off spot.

 

Riding high are reigning champions Northampton, who will be looking to add a second consecutive trophy into their ever-growing cabinet. Clear at the top and with the hard yards of the season done, they can rest soundly knowing that there’ll be a semi-final place for them no matter what happens in the coming days.

Also in that boat are Bath, the most feared side in the domestic game in the early 1990s, although they have gone ten years since topping the table, and almost twenty since lifting the trophy. With odds of 2.5 and 2.75 respectively at the time of writing to win English rugby’s most coveted title, it’s clear to see that expectations are high for both clubs.

Captain Dylan Hartley has led The Saints from the front once again this season, and Stephen Myler’s 200+ points have been invaluable. There’s been no better side throughout the course of this year’s competition and they deserve to be favourites.?However, that’s not to say the play-offs can’t and won’t throw up some surprises, as they often do.

Battlers Exeter have been one of the year’s surprise packages and they’ll be aiming for big scalps this time round. New signing Julian Salvi described them as,?”a team on the rise” following last year’s cup win, a good run in the European Cup and their current form in the league. They recently beat close league rivals?Saracens to bring the play-off qualifications right down to the wire and it would be a huge boost for the club should they usurp the respected Londoners.

As you would expect, Leicester are also in the running and can never be discounted. The most successful club in the UK to date, they have won ten Premiership titles and have rarely been out of the mix. The Tigers have had their fair share of hard-fought battles with the aforementioned Exeter boys of late so they know any team is capable of causing an upset.

There are five teams still eager to make their mark on rugby history, and there are not many games left to do it in. It really is crunch time, literally and metaphorically, as bodies will be put on the line in pursuit of championship gold. This has got to be one of the most exciting play-off run-insfor a long time. Do not take your eyes off it!