RECAP: Crusaders v Jaguares
READERS’ FORUM: Welcome to @rugby365com‘s live coverage of the @SuperRugby #Final between the @crusadersrugby and @JaguaresARG in Christchurch.
The Christchurch-based Crusaders are bidding for a third successive title and their 10th overall, while the Jaguares have reached the Final in only their fourth year in the Southern Hemisphere championship.
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Prediction: The Crusaders and Jaguares will clash for just the third time in Super Rugby, the Crusaders picked up a win in each of their two meetings by an average margin of 22 points per game. Only twice in Super Rugby history has the Grand Final been won by a team playing outside their home country (the Crusaders defeated the Brumbies in 2000 and the Crusaders defeated the Lions in 2017). Nine of the last 13 Super Rugby Grand finals have been decided by a margin of fewer than 10 points; though, only one of the last three fits that bill. The Crusaders are undefeated in their last 30 Super Rugby games played on home soil (29 wins and one draw); the last time they lost at home to a team from outside New Zealand was in Round One, 2015 against the Rebels. This will be the Crusaders’ 14th appearance in a Super Rugby Grand final, more than twice as many as any other team (Brumbies, six); they’ve won nine of their previous 13 including their last two on the bounce. This will be the Jaguares’ first foray into a Super Rugby Grand Final; only four teams in Super Rugby history have won the Grand Final on their first attempt (Blues in 1996, Crusaders in 1998, Bulls in 2007, Reds in 2011). The Jaguares have won five of their last six Super Rugby games away from home, including their last three on the bounce. The Crusaders (33.2) and Jaguares (28.9) have scored more points per game than any other teams in Super Rugby 2019. Sevu Reece (Crusaders) bagged a brace of tries against the Hurricanes in the semifinal to take his season tally to 15, just one shy of the Super Rugby record set by Ben Lam last season (16). Guido Petti Pagadizaval (Jaguares) stole a brace of line-outs against the Brumbies in the semi-final to take his season tally to 13, three more than any other player in the competition and more than three times the Crusaders’ best (Scott Barrett, Kieran Read, Sam Whitelock – four each).
Margin: 15 points
Crusaders: 15 David Havili, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Braydon Ennor, 12 Jack Goodhue, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Whetukamokamo Douglas, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Mitchell Dunshea, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody.
Replacements: 16 Andrew Makalio, 17 George Bower, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 Will Jordan.
Jaguares: 15 Emiliano Boffelli, 14 Matias Moroni, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Jeronimo de la Fuente (captain), 11 Ramiro Moyano, 10 Joaquin Diaz Bonilla, 9 Tomas Cubelli, 8 Javier Ortega Desio, 7 Marcos Kremer, 6 Pablo Matera, 5 Tomas Lavanini, 4 Guido Petti, 3 Santiago Medrano, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Nahuel Tetaz Chaparro.
Replacements: 16 Julian Montoya, 17 Mayco Vivas, 18 Enrique Pieretto, 19 Juan Manuel Leguizamón, 20 Tomas Lezana, 21 Felipe Ezcurra, 22 Domingo Miotti, 23 Sebastián Cancelliere.
Referee: Jaco Peyper
Assistant referees: Mike Fraser, Paul Williams
TMO: Ben Skeen