The Vodacom Bulls and DHL Stormers will want to keep alive their hopes of finishing in the top four for a home quarter-final in the next few weeks, and the Emirates Lions will have their sights set on trying to sneak into the top eight.

For the Hollywoodbets Sharks, momentum leading into their EPCR Challenge Cup final will be crucial, but they would also like to leapfrog Cardiff for their best possible log finish.

The DHL Stormers are the only side that will play away as they line up against the Dragons in Newport on Friday evening, while a jam-packed Saturday awaits South Africa’s rugby faithful with the Vodacom Bulls hosting the Glasgow Warriors in Pretoria, the Hollywoodbets Sharks taking on Benetton in Durban, and the Emirates Lions going up against Cardiff in Johannesburg.

The Vodacom Bulls have an inside lane for a top-four finish as they are currently in fourth place on the standings with 51 points – six ahead of the fifth-placed DHL Stormers – and they will certainly want to make the most of their home ground advantage against log-leaders, Glasgow, who hold a seven-point lead over them on the table.

The DHL Stormers may face a tougher assignment playing away from home, but they will take comfort from the fact that the Dragons are second-last on the log with only three victories in their 15 matches so far this season.

The 13th placed Hollywoodbets Sharks will enter their match against the eighth-placed Benetton well aware of the fact that they cannot overtake them on the log, but with the Durbanites having qualified for the EPCR Challenge Cup final against Gloucester, and the side determined to finish the Vodacom URC season strongly, they could do the Emirates Lions a massive favour if they topple the Italian visitors.

The 11th placed Emirates Lions will want to make up for their defeat against Munster in their last outing when they host the 12th placed Cardiff, and with the team trailing Benetton by only five points and the prospect of edging close to a possible playoff spot, they will have all the motivation they need to come away with a win on Saturday.

In Wales, the DHL Stormers will enter their clash against the Dragons as favourites on form and based on their log position, especially with their track record showing nine wins this season to three by the Dragons, which includes a morale-boosting 42-12 victory against Leinster two weeks ago. That said, they will be careful about writing off the hosts, whose three wins were all at home in Newport.

With the Capetonians having scored 128 points more than their opposition this season and conceding 218 points fewer, they will target this match for a bonus point victory. The fact that they face a daunting task next week against Connacht in their second tour game will also certainly fuel their determination.

The Vodacom Bulls, in turn, will be bracing themselves for a gruelling match against the Glasgow Warriors, but they will draw inspiration from the fact they have only suffered one defeat at home this season, while a victory would also bolster their chances of hosting a quarter-final.

The Pretoria side have been superior on attack this season, but they will go up against the best defensive team in the Vodacom URC, which sets the scene for a thrilling encounter.

The Hollywoodbets Sharks, meanwhile, will look to build on their impressive form of late when they take on Benetton, especially after winning two of their last three Vodacom URC matches – against Edinburgh and the Scarlets, the latter being on tour – and after toppling Clermont-Auvergne last weekend in London to become the first South African team in history to qualify for the EPCR Challenge Cup final.

The KwaZulu-Natalians may have only won four matches in the competition to Benetton’s nine, but the teams are not far off from one another on attack and defence, meaning it could prove to be a humdinger.

In Johannesburg, the Emirates Lions will also have their sights set on a victory against Cardiff, especially with the home side’s win record this season being four more than the Welsh side. Their attacking statistics will also boost their confidence as they have scored 424 points to Cardiff’s 311, which will also count in their favour as only two points separate the teams in terms of defence.

With the visitors out of the running for a playoff spot, they will, however, be driven by pride – something the Emirates Lions will be wary of when they take the field.

Match information:

Dragons v DHL Stormers
Date: Friday, 10 May
Venue: Rodney Parade, Newport
Referee: Chris Busby
SA Time: 20h35
TV: SuperSport

Vodacom Bulls v Glasgow Warriors
Date: Saturday, 11 May
Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Referee: Ben Whitehouse
SA Time: 14h00
TV: SuperSport

Hollywoodbets Sharks v Benetton
Date: Saturday, 11 May
Venue: Hollywoodbets Kings Park, Durban
Referee: Mike Adamson
SA Time: 16h05
TV: SuperSport

Emirates Lions v Cardiff
Date: Saturday, 11 May
Venue: Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg
Referee: Eoghan Cross
SA Time: 18h15
TV: SuperSport