Crusaders v Bulls: Super Rugby finals live scores, blog
The Crusaders' Robbie Fruean scores a try against the Waratahs during round 10 of their Super Rugby match in Sydney on Sunday, April 29, 2012. (AAP Image/Paul Miller)
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The Crusaders Vs. The Bulls
2012 Super Rugby Tournament, 22 July, 2012
|Rugby Stadium, Addington, Christchurch|
|The Crusaders 28 defeated The Bulls 13|
|The Crusaders||The Bulls|
|Referee: J Peyper|
|Touch judges: K Brown & G Jackson|
The first qualifying final of a blockbuster night of Super Rugby will see the Bulls fly to Christchurch to take on the Crusaders. Join us for live scores and updates from 5.35pm AEST.
It’s no surprise that the Crusaders are heavy favourites leading into the encounter. The franchise has dominated Super Rugby since its inception and this year has been no different.
Their team for Saturday night boasts no less that ten All Blacks, along with a further two on the bench.
The Crusaders have only lost a finals match in New Zealand once and that was all the way back in 2003, against Carlos Spencer’s legendary Blues outfit.
In stark contrast, the Bulls have never won a final outside of South Africa.
The Bulls will head to New Zealand with some comfort, knowing that they beat the Crusaders in their last encounter in round seven. In fact, they have beaten the Crusaders in four out of five of their last encounters.
However, all the victories have been in South Africa and they will know that it will be whole different kettle of fish when they run out onto Rugby Park on Saturday night.
Eye gouging allegations from their last encounter have also been smouldering away, fuelling a bitter and intense rivalry.
Surprisingly, the post-Bakkies Bulls team were the ones pointing their fingers at the Crusaders that night.
This will surely add to the drama with the Crusaders probably relishing the chance to get even for the unsubstantiated, character damaging claims directed at them.
Both teams are at full strength with the only notable injury for the Crusaders being Kieran Read. He is well covered though, with Richie McCaw shifting to the back of the scrum to make room for Matt Todd on the open-side flank.
Pierre Spies will sniff an opportunity to test McCaw in a relatively unfamiliar position, however the All Black stalwart should be up to the challenge.
Both teams boast world-renowned goal kickers, capable of slotting penalties and drop-goals from anywhere inside their opponents half.
But both Morne Steyn and Dan Carter have been uncharacteristically off with the boot in recent times.
Finals rugby is a tight and tough affair and a good or bad day with a boot will be a telling factor in the outcome of this match.
Make sure you don’t a miss a moment of the action by joining us here for live scores and updates starting 5.30pm AEST.
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