Crusaders make it hard for Sharks

Sat, 12 Jul 2014 09:11
Large read v highlanders

The Crusaders made an emphatic claim for a home semifinal in the competition with a bonus-point 34-8 victory over the Highlanders.

The Crusaders made an emphatic claim for a home semifinal in the competition with a bonus-point 34-8 victory over the Highlanders in their final pool match on Saturday.
 
The Highlanders, although guaranteed a play-off spot, did not look up for this game. On the other hand the Crusaders looked rampant in their quest for second place and a home semifinal.
 
With the table-topping Waratahs already assured of one semifinal, it will take a Herculean effort by the Sharks to deny the Crusaders the second berth.
 
The Sharks will need to beat the Stormers by a 35-point margin and pick up a bonus point in the final match of the regular season if they are to sneak into second place.
 
The Crusaders, seven-time Super champions, led the Highlanders 17-3 at half-time, scoring their first try just ahead of the break, before adding three more for their bonus point in the second half.
 
The Highlanders struggled to find their way with their talismanic captain Ben Smith sidelined by a leg infection.
 
They were punished for repeated indiscretions from which Dan Carter landed four penalties to give the Crusaders a handy lead in the first half before they began exchanging penalties for tries.
 
Matt Todd scored the first two and Corey Flynn the fourth from lineout drives when the Crusaders turned down handy shots at goal and kicked for the corner.
 
The third try came when scrumhalf Andy Ellis tapped and ran when the Crusaders had a close-range penalty and resulted in Nemani Nadolo scoring wide out.
 
The Crusaders forwards dominated throughout the match with their scrum and lineout both a class above what the Highlanders could muster, and the home side benefitted from five steals against the throw.
 
After beating the Auckland Blues two weeks ago, Crusaders centre Ryan Crotty said they were building nicely for the final.
 
"We've had a couple of good wins over the Blues and the Highlanders and it gives us momentum going into the finals. It's been a good couple of weeks."
 
While the Highlanders have qualified for the play-offs for the first time in 12 years, the Crusaders have reached the knock-out stage for the 13th consecutive year.
 
Man of the Match: For the Highlanders, Malakai Fekitoa tried his best to get his team over the advantage line, Manu was prevelent but not as effective as he has been. For the Crusaders Carter brought some of his class acting like a second flyhalf at No.12, Dagg looked more threatning but over all it was the class of captain Kieran Read that really shone through.
 
Scorers:
 
Crusaders:
Tries: Todd 2, Nadolo, Flynn
Con: Carter
Pens: Carter 4
 
Highlanders:
Try: Buckman
Pen: Parker
 
Teams:
 
Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Kieron Fonotia, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Dan Carter, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Corey Flynn, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Jimmy Tupou, 20 Luke Whitelock, 21 Willi Heinz, 22 Tom Taylor, 23 Johnny McNicholl.
 
Highlanders: 15 Trent Renata, 14 Richard Buckman, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Shaun Treeby, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Hayden Parker, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (captain), 7 Shane Christie, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Tom Franklin, 3 Chris King, 2 Liam Coltman, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Ged Robinson, 17 Matias Diaz, 18 JP Koen, 19 Josh Bekhuis, 20 Gareth Evans, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Lima Sopoaga, 23 Phil Burleigh.
 
Referee: Craig Joubert (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand), Kane McBride (New Zealand)
TMO: Chris Watt (New Zealand)
There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Mon, 27 February 2017
UCT-Ikeys v Maties 14h45 Cape Town
Rhodes v Fort Hare 16h30 Grahamstown
CUT-Ixias v UJ 16h30 Bloemfontein
CPUT v UKZN-Impi 16h30 Cape Town
UWC v TUT 16h30 Cape Town
UP-Tuks v Wits 16h30 Pretoria
Shimlas v NWU-Pukke 17h00 Bloemfontein
Thu, 02 March 2017
Force v Reds 10h30 Perth
Fri, 03 March 2017
Chiefs v Blues 06h35 Hamilton
Connacht v Zebre 19h35 Ascoli Piceno
Ulster v Treviso 19h35 Kingspan Stadium
Edinburgh v Ospreys 19h35 Myreside
Sale Sharks v Northampton Saints 20h15 AJ Bell Stadium
Sat, 04 March 2017
Hurricanes v Rebels 04h15 Wellington
Highlanders v Crusaders 06h45 Dunedin
Brumbies v Sharks 08h45 Canberra
Sunwolves v Kings 10h55 Singapore
Lions v Waratahs 13h05 Johannesburg
Gloucester v Harlequins 15h00 Kingsholm
Leicester Tigers v Exeter Chiefs 15h00 Welford Road
Worcester Warriors v Bristol 15h00 Sixways
Bath v Wasps 15h00 Recreation Ground
Glasgow Warriors v Dragons 15h00 Scotstoun Stadium
Stormers v Jaguares 15h15 Cape Town
Cardiff Blues v Munster 17h15 BT Sport Cardiff Arms Park
Cheetahs v Bulls 17h30 Bloemfontein
Leinster v Scarlets 19h35 RDS Arena
Sun, 05 March 2017
Newcastle Falcons v Saracens 15h00 Kingston Park
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 1 1 0 0 4
Reds 1 1 0 0 4
Brumbies 1 0 0 1 1
Force 1 0 0 1 1
Rebels 1 0 0 1 0
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 1 1 0 0 5
Blues 1 1 0 0 5
Chiefs 1 1 0 0 5
Crusaders 1 1 0 0 4
Highlanders 1 0 0 1 0
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 1 1 0 0 4
Cheetahs 1 0 0 1 1
Bulls 1 0 0 1 0
Sunwolves 1 0 0 1 0
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Jaguares 1 1 0 0 4
Lions 1 1 0 0 4
Sharks 1 0 0 1 1
Kings 1 0 0 1 0