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Super Rugby | Christchurch
07:35 (GMT) | 17-04-2015
  • 81
Join us for more live coverage of Super rugby as the Hurricanes take on the Waratahs next up in Round 10.
  • 80
Crusaders win the line-out and spread wide, the Siren has gone and they launch an attack as Tupou picks up a loose ball and runs down the middle of the park making 50m, he finds Havili with a pass. The Chiefs turn the ball over and begin a counter from their own try-line. They could kick the ball out but they are in search of a bonus point. Nanai-Williams receives a ball-and-all pass as he spills it forward to bring the game to FULL-TIME.
  • 78
The Crusaders keep attacking but still can't find a way through, and they loose it forward as the Chiefs are awarded a scrum. Pulu feeds and the chiefs are awarded a penalty for Joe Moody collapsing. Horrell will kick for touch.
  • 76
Crusaders now desperately attacking around the Chiefs 10, but it is just not happening for them. There is no way through as the chiefs stand strong. Codie Taylor finds a way through an inside pass. Slade puts a chip over but Nanai-Williams clears back down-field. Crusaders a right back where they were before as Slade is directing traffic. They receive a penalty and they take it quickly.
  • 73
Horrell cannot add the extra 2 points.
  • 72
Chiefs opt for touch and they win the line-out. Pulu breaks left and puts James Lowe away, ghe chips and chases his own kick. Fonotia gets back and runs it out his try-line. Carter sets for the kick to touch but doesn't find touch. Marshall counters and runs at an angle drawing 3 defenders as he puts a brilliant switch pass to Nanai-williams, he off-loads to squire who canters over for a try.
  • 69
Drummond feeds, as they spread the ball to Ndolo who puts it to the boot and stabs a grubber down-field. Messam makes a hash of the pass as it goes out. Crusaders win the line-out and press forward. Carter receives from Taylor, and Sam Cane makes an excellent steal. The Crusaders are pinned as Drummond is impeding Pulu.
  • 68
Ellis puts a kick out on the full from the scrum and the chiefs have a line-out, which they win, on the 'Saders 22m. Pulu is controlling at the base playing the forwards as they rumble forward. Accidental off-side from the Chiefs allows for a Crusaders scrum just outside their 22m.
  • 66
Chiefs secure the line-out and Sonny-bill Williams makes a text-book off-load to Ngatai who busts down the field to the 22m. He busts down the centre of the park before he throws a loose off-load. Crusaders have a scrum just outside their 22m.
  • 65
Lowe kicks deep from the 22m, and Read counters. The Crusaders are making good yards but are not looking effective with ball in hand. Taylor throws a skip pass to Fonotia and he is bundled into touch for a Chiefs throw.
  • 63
Retallick claims another kicks and Horrell finds a hole as the Crusaders defence holds on barely. Crusaders turn the ball over and are on the attack in midfield. Ellis again puts a box-kick up. williams returns the favour and so does Havili, however his kicks rolls into the in-goal area for a 22m.
  • 60
There is a ping-pong kicking game off the kick-off before Sonny-Bill Williams kicks one that goes too far. The Crusaders will have a scrum from where the kick took place on the 50m. The 'Saders use a set-move but Nanai-Williams reads the move well and tackles Marshall behind the gain-line. Crusaders move the ball the other way and Read puts Taufua away down the touchline. Lowe makes the tackle into touch.
  • 58
Horrell raises the flags and extends the lead for the Chiefs by a further 3 points.
  • 57
Crockett is penalised at scrum-time for hitching, and this should be an easy 3 points for Horrell.
  • 56
Slade restarts and Nanai-wWilliams counters. They move the ball left and Lowe off-loads out the back door. The Chiefs have gone through several phases but the Crusaders defence is strong. Weber passes the ball straight into the Ref's head and it will be a Chiefs scrum just outside the 'Saders 22m.
  • 53
Horrell drags it to the left as he lets the Crusaders off.
  • 52
Retallick secures another line-out and the Chiefs begin an attack to the left. Williams takes an inside ball as the Chiefs make some meters. The Chiefs are awarded as penalty as Luke Romano can't roll away. Horrell looks for 3.
  • 51
Ellis plays Ndolo at first receiver and the big Fijian is tackled well by Nanai-Williams. Cane makes the turnover and the Chiefs are awarded a penalty for holding on. Retallick wins another line-out as the Chiefs cleared down-field. The Chiefs lose some ground but they consolidate, and the Crusaders are pinned at the breakdown. The Chiefs opt for touch for a line-out on the 'Saders 10.
  • 48
The Crusaders are attacking in the midfield as Carter puts a well-weighted grubber through and Nanai-Williams has to pick it up and he is tackled over the try-line. Crusaders scrum on the 5m line of the Chiefs.
  • 46
Chiefs are on the attack in the Crusaders 22m, as Cane shows some good hands with an off-load to Rettalick. Weber spreads wide to the Chiefs who look to score in the corner, but Ngatai's pass doesn't go to hand and the Crusaders have a line-out inside their 22m. Ellis puts a bx-kick in and Lowe takes it quickly but they botch it and its a Crusaders line-out on the Chiefs 10m.
  • 44
Carter attempts to kick for poles. He raises the flags and narrows the score-line.
  • 43
Crusaders collect of the restart and Ellis puts a box-kick out on the full as they begin with a poor start. Crusaders earn the ball back with a scrum. Ellis puts another kick in as as Horrell collects and plays Lowe, he puts a delicate chip over but Taylor picks it up and snipes through a hole. He off-loads to Funnel and the Chiefs are penalised for Sam Cane not releasing the tackled player at the ruck.
  • 41
SECOND-HALF: Chiefs flyhalf Andrew Horrell gets the half underway.

Half Time

  • 40
The siren has gone as Horrell misses the conversion for the Chiefs. That brings us to HALF-TIME.
  • 39
Carter kicks for touch and Whitelock claims the line-out. The Crusaders attack through Ellis and the ball pops out the side of the ruck as James Lowe picks it up and sprints 70 meters down the touch-line untouched for a try.
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Crusaders consolidate off the restart and Ellis clears but doesn't find touch. Marshall returns the favour and the crusaders are attacking through Carter and Read. The Chiefs are penalised for being off their feet at the breakdown.
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Carter eventually converts the penalty to close in on the Chiefs lead.
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Crusaders awarded a penalty at the scrum and Carter will try again for 3.
  • 34
The Chiefs line-out doesn't go 5m and the Crusaders opt for a scrum 5m out. Read picks up and charges forward. Crusaders keep peeling left and attacking channel 1. A scrum is given to the Crusaders.
  • 31
Crusaders earn the ball back after the restart and spread wide to Read however is off-load has gone into touch. Chiefs win the ball at the line-out and spread the ball wide to the right. Crusaders win the ball back again and begin a counter. Taufua makes some meters before the ball goes the opposite direction to Havili, he stabs a grubber through for a line-out on the Chiefs 5m.
  • 29
Carter cannot raise the flags as he misses 3 in a row.
  • 28
Crusaders win the line-out on the Chiefs 22m, and win a penalty as Tameifuna did not release the tackler. Read opts for the posts as Carter sets for a difficult kick out wide to against the right-hand touchline.
  • 27
Disaster at the line-out again as it is scrappy ball, the Crusaders are penalised for off-side play. Horrell puts a punt in and takes play to the Crusaders 22m. Chiefs secure the line-out but lose the ball forward in the maul. Crusaders are relieved with a scrum. The Crusaders use a good exit play as Carter puts a pin-point kick in to clear for touch.
  • 24
Crusaders now with a line-out on the 50m line, but it is stolen by the Chiefs. Horrell plays it wide and Ngatai puts a kick in out on the full. Crusaders have a line-out on the Chiefs 10m.
  • 21
Horrell, who is on for the injured Cruden, converts the penalty.
  • 20
The Chiefs put a kick through and take play to the Crusaders 22m. Retallick steals the line-out and Messam takes it hard to the gain-line. The Chiefs make valuable meters before Ellis makes a great turnover on the ground. It is messy ball as McCaw knocks on and Michael Lieich picks up the scraps and powers over the line for a try.
  • 18
Nanai-Williams is kicking for goal as Cruden is walking off a knock he received in the build-up to the penalty. He converts to put the chiefs in the lead.
  • 17
Chiefs restart and the Crusaders are on the attack again. They spread wide and Havili spills the ball forward into touch for a Chiefs scrum. Cruden puts a cross kick in and Nanai-Williams collects and pops inside to Marshall as he makes 50m. Brilliant piece of work from the Chiefs. Weber plays left and Rettalick takes it up. The Chiefs receive a penalty in-front on the Crusaders 22m.
  • 14
Carter has another go at poles in a similar position out wide to the left on the 22m. He shanks again to the left.
  • 13
Crusaders now with an attacking scrum in the Chiefs 22m. Ellis feeds and the Crusaders receive a penalty as Tameifuna is pinned for not scrumming straight.
  • 11
Carter lines up a penalty to extend the lead but pushes it left.
  • 10
Crusaders with possession as Read receives the ball at the back from a Chiefs punt. He takes the ball to the gain line. Ellis goes left and plays Taufua as the Chiefs give a penalty away at the breakdown.
  • 9
Cruden converts the penalty to make the score 3-3 with 14 men on the field.
  • 8
Crusaders give a penalty away straight off the kick-off. Cruden will take his time as he lines-up a kick for goal to level the scores.
  • 7
Carter points to the poles and converts the penalty to take the Crusaders into the lead.
  • 6
Crusaders kick for touch and secure the line-out. Taufua makes a 50m line break and is sprinting towards the try-line. He gets rid of Messam and he off-loads to Slade. Sam Cane cleans out Ellis illegally and receives a yellow card.
  • 4
Cruden opts for touch. The chiefs win the line-out and from and throw a sneaky inside ball te Weber who breaks the line and off-loads to Nanai-Williams who dives over for the try. However it is disallowed for obstruction on Crockett. Penalty Crusaders.
  • 3
Crusaders with an early scrum as the Chiefs maul goes to ground and the ball is unavailable. Ellis feeds the scrum, and its a tighthead as Cruden puts a kick in behind the Crusaders defence. Eliss puts a high kick in. There is a light kick exchange before the chiefs are awarded a penalty.
  • 0
KICK-OFF: Crusaders flyhalf Dan Carter gets the game underway.
  • -5
The Chiefs have the upper-hand in previous encounters winning 4 of last 6 matches between the two Super Rugby giants, including a victory in the most recent match in 2015 with a comfortable 40-16 victory in Hamilton.
  • -15
The chiefs have superstar Sonny Bill Williams back in the backline along side Charlie Ngatai. For the Crusaders, veterans Dan Carter and Richie McCaw return to the starting XV. It should be an interesting match-up between McCaw and Sam Cane
  • -30
Welcome to live coverage of Super Rugby Round 10 with the Chiefs taking on the Crusaders in a battle of two New Zealand heavyweights.
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  • 15 Tom Taylor
  • 14 David Kaetau Havili
  • 13 Kieron Fonotia
  • 12 Dan Carter
  • 11 Nemani Nadolo
  • 10 Colin Slade
  • 9 Andy Ellis
  • 8 Kieran Read
  • 7 Richie McCaw
  • 6 Jordan Taufua
  • 5 Sam Whitelock
  • 4 Luke Romano
  • 3 Nepo Laulala
  • 2 Ben Funnell
  • 1 Wyatt Crockett
  • 22 Nathaniel Apa
  • 21 Mitchell Drummond
  • 20 Matt Todd
  • 19 Jimmy Tupou
  • 18 Owen Franks
  • 17 Joe Moody
  • 16 Codie Taylor
  • 23 Nafi Tuitavake
  • 15 Tom Marshall
  • 14 Tim Nanai-Williams
  • 13 Charlie Ngatai
  • 12 Sonny Bill Williams
  • 11 James Lowe
  • 10 Aaron Cruden
  • 9 Brad Weber
  • 8 Michael Leitch
  • 7 Sam Cane
  • 6 Liam Messam
  • 5 Brodie Retallick
  • 4 Matt Symons
  • 3 Ben Tameifuna
  • 2 Hika Elliot
  • 1 Mitchell Graham
  • 23 Bryce Heem
  • 22 Andrew Horrell
  • 21 Augustine Pulu
  • 20 Liam Squire
  • 19 Michael Fitzgerald
  • 18 Pauliasi Manu
  • 17 Siate Tokolahi
  • 16 Quentin MacDonald
Mc article crusaders training general

Preview: S15 Round 10, Part One

Thu, 16 Apr 2015 01:22

Two delectable north-south derbies in New Zealand, a trans-Tasman showdown and an all-Australian encounter is what we look at.

Two delectable north-south derbies in New Zealand, a trans-Tasman showdown and an all-Australian encounter.

That is what we look at in the first half of our Round 10 preview- as Super Rugby's league stages moves into the second half of the season.

They don't get much better than the seven-time champion Crusaders hosting the two-time champion Chiefs in Christchurch.

And that is our opening match of the weekend - also the only Friday outing.

Saturday starts with the very intriguing trans-Tasman encounter between the unbeaten Hurricanes against the defending champion Waratahs.

Can the men from Sydney, currently 10th on the standings, get their campaign back on track by becoming the first team this season to the table-topping Hurricanes?

The Highlanders face a tricky encounter against a Blues outfit that finally broke their duck when they beat the Brumbies last week. At least the fifth-placed Highlanders will have homeground advantage.

We bring this part of our preview to a conclusion when we look at the all-Australian derby between a Brumbies team desperate to bounce back from last week's disappointment and the Rebels coming off a bye.

Friday, April 17

Crusaders v Chiefs
(AMI Stadium, Christchurch - Kick-off: 19.35; 07.35 GMT)

There was a lot of talk about "attitude" this week. It is obvious there will be plenty of 'feeling' out on the park on Friday, especially from a Crusaders team desperate to stay in the play-off race.

The game is almost a must-win for the seven-time champion Crusaders, who are eighth on the ladder after four wins and four loses.

Despite their erratic from, Chiefs coach Dave Rennie still rates the Christchurch-based outfit very highly.

"The Crusaders are a quality side," Rennie said.

"Our previous encounters with them have been of test match intensity and this is a must win game for both sides to remain in touch with the Hurricanes."

Crusaders scrumhalf Andy Ellis made no secret of the fact that the Crusaders need to bring the "right attitude" if they are to avenge their Round Three loss to the Chiefs.

"That was frustrating but it probably was a kick in the pants for us and got us refocused," the veteran scrumhalf told the New Zealand media.

"We've made some good growth since then although we're still a bit up and down."

Ellis said the keys to victory over the Chiefs were intensity in attitude and defence for 80 minutes.

"We've got to give it everything because we know they will," he said.

"It will come down to being smart on attack and making good decisions."

Both teams are capable of playing some entertaining and expansive rugby, but the Crusaders may be set for a more tactical approach - given that Dan Carter and Colin Slade will play next two each other.

Also of interest will be the head-to-head battle between Carter and Sonny Bill Williams at inside centre.

Recent results:
2015: Chiefs won 40-16, Hamilton
2014: Crusaders won 18-17, Hamilton
2014: Chiefs won 18-10, Christchurch
2013: Chiefs won 20-19, Hamilton (semifinal)
2013: Crusaders won 43-15, Christchurch
2013: Chiefs won 28-19, Hamilton

Prediction: Since the start of 2012, the Chiefs have maintained a 66 percent win rate against the Crusaders. Eight of the last 10 encounters between the sides have been settled by margins fewer than 10 points. Indeed, a losing bonus point has been scored in four of the last six meetings between these sides hosted by the Crusaders. The Crusaders have failed to hit double figures in the first   half of their last four encounters against the Chiefs and managed no more than 10 second half points in each of those games too. These two sides are the worst disciplined in the competition so far. Only the Chiefs (12.4) have averaged more penalties than the Crusaders (12.3). Both sides have been shown six yellow cards apiece, more than any other team. The Crusaders and Chiefs rank last and second last for ruck success rate this season (both 93 percent). The Crusaders are the best side when in possession at scrum time, winning 96 percent of their feeds and more than any other side. It is a tough call to make, as the teams appear evenly matched. The Chiefs don't have any problems winning in Christchurch, but we're going to take a punt on the Crusaders and say they will win by seven points or less.


Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 David Havili, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Dan Carter, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Richie McCaw, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Owen Franks, 19 Jimmy Tupou, 20 Matt Todd, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Tom Taylor, 23 Nafi Tuitavake.

Chiefs: 15 Tom Marshall, 14 Tim Nanai-Williams, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Michael Leitch, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Liam Messam (captain), 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Matt Symons, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Mitchell Graham.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Pauliasi Manu, 19 Mike Fitzgerald, 20 Liam Squire, 21 Augustine Pulu, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Bryce Heem.

Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Kane McBride (New Zealand), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Ben Skeen (New Zealand)

Saturday, April 18

Hurricanes v Waratahs
(Westpac Stadium, Wellington - Kick-off: 16.30; 14.30 AEST; 04.30 GMT)

The question on everybody's lips is: How long will the Hurricanes remain unbeaten?

The men from Wellington have looked near unstoppable - with the coaching combination of Chris Boyd and John Plumtree adding some real forward grunt to compliment the obvious backline class.

On the flip side there is a desperate Waratahs heading to Wellington, the defending champions looking to return to the winners circle and keeping their play-off hopes alive.

Last weekend the New South Welshmen went down to the Stormers (18-32) in an end-to-end contest in Sydney.

The Waratahs have won four of seven fixtures this season and stalwart centre Adam Ashley-Cooper believes they need to find some form if they want to compete with the Hurricanes, who currently lead the overall conference by six points.

"One, they're playing really good football at the moment and two, it's over in New Zealand so the travel is going to be a challenge. It will be a real test of character," Ashley-Cooper said in an interview on the Australian Rugby Union website.

Waratahs assistant coach Daryl Gibson considers the New Zealand heavyweights to be genuine title contenders in 2015.

"The Hurricanes look very hungry this year and you can see that by the way Conrad Smith is leading the team, they have a very experienced backline and the forwards to me, look like they have transformed into a hard-working pack," Gibson said

"They have always been a very good team from unstructured play, they can score long-range tries and they have showed that this season," Gibson said.

Hurricanes assistant coach Richard Watt said they are confident that last week's bye won't break the team's rhythm, but admitted the Waratahs pose a massive threat.

"They are a team that's a bit wounded at the moment," Watt told The dominion Post.

"That loss last week [to the Stormers] has probably stung them and they'll be desperate for some championship points.

"If you look where they're sitting on the table I think they're tenth at the moment, so they will come here pretty fired up.

"They're playing through champs, a lot of international players, that forward pack is pretty much an Aussie pack.

They are a big forward pack and they've got a lot going on [in attack]. They're pretty direct when they want to be and create space for themselves."

Recent results:
2014: Waratahs won 39-30, Sydney
2013: Hurricanes won 41-29, Wellington
2012: Hurricanes won 33-12, Sydney
2010: Waratahs won 32-16, Sydney
2009: Waratahs won 26-22, Wellington
2008: Waratahs won 20-3, Sydney

Prediction: A losing bonus point has been netted in just one of the last seven meetings between the sides. The Tahs have won five of those seven matches. The last five meetings between the sides have all seen 45+ points on the board in total and an average of 56 per game. The Hurricanes have equalled their best ever run of form in this competition (seven wins). Four of those wins have come via a margin of a converted try or less. The Tahs have produced fewer kicks from hand per game (13.7) than any other team, while The Hurricanes have been the beneficiaries from the fewest kicks from hand from their opponents; an average of 14.9. Only the Hurricanes (9) have scored more last quarter tries than the Tahs (7). This may well be the match that send the Waratahs into a nosedive and out of the play-off race. The Hurricanes to win by about 16 points.


Hurricanes: 15 Nehe Milner-Skudder, 14 Cory Jane, 13 Conrad Smith (captain), 12 Ma'a Nonu, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Brad Shields, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Callum Gibbins, 5 James Broadhurst, 4 Jeremy Thrush, 3 Ben Franks, 2 Motu Matu'u, 1 Reggie Goodes.
Replacements: 16 Brayden Mitchell, 17 Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, 18 Chris Eves, 19 Mark Abbott, 20 Adam Hill, 21 Frae Wilson, 22 Rey Lee-Lo, 23 James Marshall.

Waratahs: 15 Israel Folau, 14 Peter Betham, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Kurtley Beale, 11 Rob Horne, 10 Bernard Foley, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Pat McCutcheon, 5 Dave Dennis (captain), 4 Will Skelton, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Tolu Latu, 1 Benn Robinson.
Replacements - from: Tatafu Polota-Nau, Jeremy Tilse, Paddy Ryan, Jacques Potgieter, Mitchell Chapman, Stephen Hoiles, Brendan McKibbin, Matt Carraro, David Horwitz, Jed Holloway.

Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Shane McDermott (New Zealand), Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)

Highlanders v Blues
(Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin - 19.35; 07.35 GMT)

The Blues will be keen to prove last week's win over the Brumbies, their first of the season, was not a one-off fluke.

However, injuries have not been kind to the men from Auckland - who will be without Luke Braid (concussion), while prop Tony Woodcock, left wing Melani Nanai and inside centre George Moala have all been bracketed pending a decision on their fitness to be made on Friday.

Coach John Kirwan was adamant he has the depth to cover the setbacks.

"You have got to trust the squad," Kirwan told

"There is no use playing guys that are a little bit injured."

The coach added that the Blues had put last week's win behind them and are looking to gather some momentum.

"We haven't taken too much notice of it," he said of their 16-14 triumph in Auckland - secured when Ihaia West slotted a 75th-minute penalty and Nic White hooked his last-minute attempt past the uprights.

"We have dropped that pretty quick and we are focusing on the Highlanders.

"We know they are an in-form team at the moment.

"They are playing exceptionally well."

The Highlanders, with back-to-back wins over the Stormers and Crusaders, will fancy their chances at home.

Hooker Liam Coltman, prop Kane Hames and lock Mark Reddish all start in a changed tight five that gives the home team a solid foundation.

Recent results:
2014: Blues won 30-12, Auckland
2014: Highlanders won 29-21, Dunedin
2013: Highlanders won 38-28, Dunedin
2013: Blues won 29-18, Auckland
2012: Highlanders won 27-20, Auckland
2012: Highlanders won 30-27, Dunedin

Prediction: Seven of the Highlanders' last eight matches have been settled by a losing bonus-point margin. The Landers have won their last three at home to the Blues but lost the previous three before that; they have never won four on the bounce at home to the Auckland-based side.  The last seven clashes between the sides have seen an average of 51 points on the board and no fewer than 42, which was in their most recent meeting last year. The last three visits of the Blues to the Highlanders have produced 173 points; an average of 57 per match.  The Highlanders' opponents have won more scrums at a better success rate (93 percent) than against any other side. However, the Dunedin-based team has forced the lowest tackling success rate (82 percent) from their opponents. Both these sides have scored just one opening quarter try this season. The Blues have scored the fewest final quarter tries too (one). The Blues may have some confidence after their maiden win for the season, but the Highlanders have been more consistent and that will be crucial. The Highlanders to win by at least 10 points.


Highlanders: 15 Ben Smith (co-captain), 14 Waisake Naholo, 13 Malakai Fekitoa, 12 Jason Emery, 11 Patrick Osborne, 10 Lima Sopoaga, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Nasi Manu (co-captain), 7 James Lentjes, 6 Elliot Dixon, 5 Joe Wheeler, 4 Mark Reddish, 3 Josh Hohneck, 1 Liam Coltman, 1 Kane Hames.
Replacements: 16 Ash Dixon, 17 Brendon Edmonds, 18 Pingi Tala'apitaga, 19 Tom Franklin, 20 Dan Pryor, 21 Fumiaki Tanaka, 22 Marty Banks, 23 Richard Buckman.

Blues: 15 Charles Piutau, 14 Frank Halai, 13 Pita Ahki, 12 George Moala/Francis Saili, 11 Melani Nanai/Tevita Li, 10 Dan Bowden, 9 Jamison Gibson-Park, 8 Jerome Kaino (captain), 7 Brendon O'Connor, 6 Akira Ioane, 5 Patrick Tuipulotu, 4 Josh Bekhuis, 3 Angus Ta'avao, 2 James Parsons, 1 Ofa Tu'ungafasi.
Replacements: 16 Keven Mealamu, 17 Tony Woodcock/Sam Prattley, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Hayden Triggs, 20 Blake Gibson, 21 Jimmy Cowan, 22 Ihaia West, 23 Francis Saili.

Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Ben O'Keeffe (New Zealand), Mike Lash (New Zealand)
TMO: Vinny Munro (New Zealand)

Brumbies v Rebels
(GIO Stadium, Canberra - Kick-off: 19.40; 09.40 GMT)

The Rebels will arrive in Canberra rested and fresh after their bye in Round Nine.

They will be met by a Brumbies team under a cloud of injury.

After easing through the first month of Super Rugby with just the one significant injury, the Brumbies depth is being tested - with another three starting players injured last week.

Along with Test stars Matt Toomua (ankle) and Scott Sio (knee), versatile outside back James Dargaville (foot) all went down during the narrow two-point (14-16) loss to the Blues and all are expected to spend lengthy periods recovering.

But despite the three joining a long list of injured players - which include Wallaby outside centre Tevita Kuridrani, Fotu Auelua and Jesse Mogg - Wallaby utility forward Scott Fardy is optimistic that the Brumbies team will have the depth to bounce back from last week's disappointment.

"We've had so much faith in what the guys off the bench have done this year," Fardy said in an interview on the Brumbies website.

"I think the guys you saw in Auckland - those we brought guys off the bench - did a great job.

"I'm really excited for those guys [who will start in place of the injured players].

"I look at it more as an opportunity; you've got to take those things, when guys get injured you've got to see it as an opportunity to increase your depth and see how guys are.

"I'm really excited about the potential players who are about come in and see what they're going to do for us."

One player in line to replace injured prop Scott Sio for the Brumbies important local derby with the improving Rebels is South African-born JP Smith and Fardy said that his fellow Brumbies were excited to see the newly awarded Australian citizen start.

"Yeah [it's a] big opportunity for him [Smith], he was one of those guys that came off the bench last week and was really impressive," Fardy said.

"When he came on I think he made about 14 tackles in half an hour and he was incredible.  He's someone who just needs an opportunity and obviously with Scotty's injury he gets that so we're looking forward to watching how he plays."

Saturday's match against the 10th placed Rebels serves as a vitally important match for the Brumbies, who in the coming weeks face the difficult propositions of facing the Highlanders and Waratahs at home before a two week tour of South Africa.

Recent results:
2015: Brumbies won 20-15, Melbourne
2014: Brumbies won 37-10, Canberra
2014: Rebels won 32-24, Melbourne
2013: Brumbies won 39-17, Canberra
2013: Brumbies won 30-13, Melbourne
2012: Brumbies won 27-19, Melbourne
2012: Brumbies won 37-6, Canberra

Prediction: The Brumbies have won all four of their meetings with the Rebels in Canberra; scoring 32, 37, 39 and 37 points during the course of these meetings. The aggregate score in those matches is 145-50, with the Rebels' smallest losing margin in this run sitting at 15 points. The Brumbies have won their last 11 home games, equalling their best run of its kind since winning their first 13 at home between 1996 and 1998. The Brumbies have the best line-out success rate (91 percent) this season, while the Rebels' is the worst (78 percent).  The ACT-based side has conceded fewer (9.3) and won more (12.6) penalties per game than any other team this year.  The Brumbies have scored eight tries and conceded just one in the 20 minutes following half-time. The Rebels have scored two and conceded five in the same timeframe. The Brumbies will have been stung by last week's loss and the Rebels could feel the brunt of their frustrations. The Brumbies to win by 15 points or more.


Brumbies: 15 Robbie Coleman, 14 Lausii Taliauli, 13 Henry Speight, 12 Nigel Ah Wong, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 Christian Lealiifano, 9 Michael Dowsett, 8 Jarrad Butler, 7 David Pocock, 6 Scott Fardy, 5 Sam Carter, 4 Rory Arnold, 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore (captain), 1 JP Smith.
Replacements: 16 Josh Mann-Rea, 17 Allan Alaalatoa, 18 Ruan Smith, 19 Blake Enever, 20 Ita Vaea, 21 Jordan Smiler, 22 Nic White, 23 Rodney Iona.

Rebels: 15 Mike Harris, 14 Tom English, 13 Tamati Ellison, 12 Mitch Inman, 11 Sefanaia Naivalu, 10 Jack Debreczeni, 9 Nic Stirzaker, 8 Scott Higginbotham (captain), 7 Scott Fuglistaller, 6 Sean McMahon, 5 Lopeti Timani, 4 Luke Jones, 3 Paul Alo-Emile, 2 Pat Leafa, 1 Toby Smith.
Replacements: 16 Tom Sexton, 17 Cruze Ah-Nau, 18 Tim Metcher, 19 Cadeyrn Neville, 20 Colby Fainga'a, 21 Jordy Reid, 22 Luke Burgess, 23 Bryce Hegarty.

Referee: Angus Gardner (Australia)
Assistant referees: James Leckie (Australia), Federico Anselmi (Argentina)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)

Compiled by Jan de Koning

Statistical information provided by Opta Sports

Mc article chiefs v crusaders

Chiefs do the double over Crusaders

Fri, 17 Apr 2015 09:15

The Chiefs have made it two from two against the Crusaders this season, with a 26-9 victory in Christchurch on Friday.

The Chiefs have made it two from two against the Crusaders this season, with a 26-9 victory in Christchurch on Friday.
Two tries to the Chiefs in the first half, from Michael Leitch and James Lowe, set the visitors up for, what was in the end, a comfortable win.
The Chiefs maintained their impressive away defensive record by keeping the Crusaders try-less throughout the match - having only conceded one try in four games away from home in 2015. 
Meanwhile, the Crusaders left plenty of points out on the field with All Black kicking ace Dan Carter having an off day with the boot.
The Chiefs punished the Crusaders 40-16 last time they met, in Hamilton and this win sends the Waikato outfit up to the top of the New Zealand conference - for the time being.
The warning signs were there for the Crusaders in the first half with the Chiefs getting early set-piece dominance.
The Chiefs scored the only two tries of the first half and led 18-6 at the break, despite losing flank Sam Cane for 10 minutes in the sin-bin early on for a professional foul.
Both teams had scoring chances, but the Chiefs looked the more dangerous and three missed penalty goals by All Blacks star Dan Carter did not help the home team's cause.
The Chiefs should have had a try to wing Tim Nanai-Williams in the fourth minute but Ben Tameifuna was penalised for an obstruction on Wyatt Crockett as scrumhalf Brad Weber scooted through to create the touchdown.
But Japan skipper and Chiefs No.8 Michael Leitch finally got the first try at the midway point of the first half, after quick hands enabled Nanai-Williams to make ground down the right side of the field, the ball was moved left and then stolen by the Crusaders only for them to lose it forward.
Referee Nick Briant played advantage and Leitch powered through to score.
The conversion was kicked by replacement Andrew Horrell after the Chiefs' star pivot Aaron Cruden was taken from the field with a knee injury a couple of minutes earlier. As Cruden was initially treated, Nanai-Williams kicked a penalty goal in his absence.
It was 13-6 with time up after a couple of Carter penalty goals for the hosts, but after the hooter sounded, with the Crusaders hot on attack, scrumhalf Andy Ellis was stripped of the ball by Leitch, the ball squirted loose on the short side and wing James Lowe ran 80 metres to score.
The Crusaders were the first to score after the break with a Carter penalty goal early on, but it was the Chiefs again who had the better of the third-quarter exchanges, Horrell raising the flags with one of two penalty attempts at goal, making the score 21-9.
As time ran out for the Crusaders they kept playing a percentage game, kicking far too much ball away and unlike the Chiefs not having a go with ball in hand.
Then it was replacement No.8 Liam Squire who got the Chiefs' third try with 10 minutes to go to make the lead 26-9.
The Crusaders tried to run the ball in the dying minutes but it was too little too late and the Chiefs' defence, which had been so solid and aggressive all night, had little trouble handling it.
Man of the Match: For the Crusaders, David Havili looked illusive when he got his hands on the ball, but their most impressive player was young flank Jordan Taufua who was relentless. For the Chiefs, Brodie Retallick was a force while James Lowe impressed with his running. Brad Weber was nippy, and Tom Marshall was very classy, but again it was a flank in Sam Cane who was most impressive, with his tireless workrate and great work on the ground.
For the Crusaders:
Pens: Carter 3
For the Chiefs:
Tries: Leitch, Lowe, Squire
Con: Horrell 
Pens: Cruden, Nanai-Williams, Horrell
Yellow Card: Sam Cane (Chiefs, 6 - professional foul, offide at the ruck)
Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 David Havili, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Dan Carter, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Richie McCaw, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Nepo Laulala, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Owen Franks, 19 Jimmy Tupou, 20 Matt Todd, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Tom Taylor, 23 Nafi Tuitavake.
Chiefs: 15 Tom Marshall, 14 Tim Nanai-Williams, 13 Charlie Ngatai, 12 Sonny Bill Williams, 11 James Lowe, 10 Aaron Cruden, 9 Brad Weber, 8 Michael Leitch, 7 Sam Cane, 6 Liam Messam (captain), 5 Brodie Retallick, 4 Matt Symons, 3 Ben Tameifuna, 2 Hika Elliot, 1 Mitchell Graham.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Siate Tokolahi, 18 Pauliasi Manu, 19 Mike Fitzgerald, 20 Liam Squire, 21 Augustine Pulu, 22 Andrew Horrell, 23 Bryce Heem.
Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Kane McBride (New Zealand), Brendon Pickerill (New Zealand)
TMO: Ben Skeen (New Zealand)
Michael Leitch (20min), James Lowe (39min), and Liam Squire (72min)
Andrew Horrell (21min)
Dan Carter (7min), Dan Carter (36min), and Dan Carter (44min)
Aaron Cruden (9min), Tim Nanai-Williams (18min), and Andrew Horrell (58min)
Sam Cane (6min)
VENUE Christchurch
REFEREE Nick Briant