Kick-off: 1730, 26/06/2021
TV: BT Sport
Exeter are red-hot favourites to retain the Gallagher Premiership trophy but Harlequins may make them work hard for it at Twickenham.
Quins showed a never-say-die spirit to overcome a 28-point deficit against Bristol in the semis and their style of play is suited to this home from home.
We’re backing the underdogs at 10/11 with 10.5 points start on the handicap market for our first Exeter vs Harlequins prediction.
A Look At Exeter Chiefs’ Betting Odds
Exeter booked their place in a sixth straight final by beating Sale 40-30 at Sandy Park, including two tries from Jack Nowell on his return from injury.
“We turned up, we were bang-on and we started the game with a great intensity,” said head coach Rob Baxter. “We managed to maintain that for most of the game.
“Most of our mistakes and errors came from a real enthusiasm to do things and I will take that any day of the week. Where we are now, I am very pleased.”
However, he did add: “My biggest concern is we conceded 30 points and that makes you think about what we will have to defend against next week.”
Although losing three times to Saracens in title deciders, the Chiefs have twice come out on top versus Wasps, winning 23-20 after extra-time in 2017 and 19-13 last term.
That suggests they are happy to grind out tight wins in big games, though.
A Look At Harlequins’ Betting Odds
Harlequins finished the regular season with a 54-26 rout of Newcastle and lived up to their tag of great entertainers when recovering from a horror start to knock out the top seed Bears.
Quins looked out for the count when 28-0 down inside half an hour but rallied to draw 31-31 at the end of 80 minutes.
Extra-time tries from Tyrone Green and Joe Marchant then saw them advance via a 43-36 scoreline.
Alex Dombrandt said: “The most important thing was everyone stayed calm and the belief never wavered.
“Even though we were 28-0 down, we still believed we could turn it around and at half-time we had some really calm conversations.
“Hopefully, we can take that into this weekend that we believe we can beat Exeter.”
He added: “Harlequins’ DNA is we want to play an attacking brand of rugby and we want to enjoy it.
“We are playing with smiles on our faces and that is when we are playing our best rugby, so that is what we will try to do on Saturday.”
Mercurial fly-half Marcus Smith scored 270 points this term, 82 more than any other player, and has the perfect foil in veteran scrum-half Danny Care.
EXETER 40-30 Sale
Bristol 36-43 HARLEQUINS
Head-to-head: Exeter 21-20 Harlequins, Harlequins 3-33 Exeter
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