Final placement battles dominate return

Stanbic Black Pirates' rookie Brandon Kebba scrambles for a loose ball with Heathen' backrow veteran Scot Oluoch. PHOTO/EDDIE CHICCO 

What you need to know:

There would also be small business to be done at the bottom as teams immerse themselves in a battle to stay afloat. 

This period in time of an ordinary season of the Nile Special Rugby Championship would witness a fierce three-horse battle at the top. 

There would also be small business to be done at the bottom as teams immerse themselves in a battle to stay afloat. 

Then, there would be another bunch who are neither fighting for the title nor relegation but partying just to complete the season.

 But the current new format has not guaranteed anyone that laxity even as the regular season remains with only three match days to play for.

What is guaranteed is that finishing the regular season in a better position would land you a weaker opponent - at least statistically - for either the promotion or relegation playoffs.

Scrum at the top

Heathens sit top of the pack with 33 points but the season’s surprise packages Jinja Hippos and Plascon Mongers are following on third and fourth with 30 and 26, respectively.

Defending champions Pirates follow with 24.

The top eight will play each other in the one-leg championship quarterfinal knockouts but according to the union’s manual, the top four will play the other four in a descending order. 

The best team will play number eight, the second to play seventh, the third play sixth and then fourth versus fifth.

Old boys Kobs who are fifth travel to Entebbe to play a tricky Mongers side knowing that they have to win to avoid meeting the other top three giants early in the knockouts.

Relegation battle

Eighth-placed Walukuba will hope to capitalize on home advantage to kill Warriors' last hope as they pray Pirates subdue Rhinos who are seventh.

At the bottom, Kampani Eagles have a tough short trip to leaders Heathens at Kyadondo. The Eagles are flying low on ninth with nine points, two above Impis and Warriors while Rams are the last with five points.

Whereas the championship knockouts will be a one-off, the relegation battle will have the two pairs of 9-vs-12 and 10-vs-11 play two legs home and away with the losers dropping to the regional league.

Nile Special Rugby Championship 

Saturday fixtures

Rhinos vs. Black Pirates – Legends

Jinja Hippos vs. Warriors – Dam Waters

Mongers vs. Kobs – Entebbe

Walukuba vs. Impis – Jinja

Heathens vs. Kampani Eagles – Kyadondo

Rams vs. Buffaloes – Makerere