Crusaders vs Hurricanes is Super Rugby’s game of the week

Rob Seltzer Roar Guru

By Rob Seltzer, Rob Seltzer is a Roar Guru

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    At the moment, no teams can live with the Kiwis – they are sweeping all in front of them. So the ladder-leading, unbeaten Crusaders against fourth-placed, reigning champion Hurricanes is a mouth-watering match-up.

    The Crusaders have been superb this season. Scott Robertson has slipped seamlessly into the head coach’s role, leading his team to ten wins from ten games – six with a try bonus-point.

    The loss of Richie Mo’unga was dealt with and they have looked better and better as each week has passed. Kieran Read has been in and out with injury as well, with other senior players such as Sam Whitelock and Ryan Crotty really stepping up to the plate.

    The Canes started their title defence like a house on fire, winning their first two games by a combined total of 154-23 against the Suwolves and Rebels respectively. They have played a game less than the Saders and have only lost one match, against the Chiefs in Waikato, and since then they have been superb.

    Beauden Barrett has been electric and Jordie Barrett is showing his talents. The continued emergence of Ngani Laumape at 12 has given their already explosive back division another dimension – and all this without Nehe Milner-Skudder.

    Both teams come into this game on the back of convincing wins against South African opposition, so will be high on confidence.

    Key battle: Ryan Crotty vs Ngani Laumape
    The current All Black 12 faces up against one of his challengers. Laumape has been in great form this season, really starting to fill the void left by Ma’a Nonu’s departure to France.

    With Sonny Bill Williams back in New Zealand rugby, the battle for the All Black 12 shirt is going to be one to keep an eye on.

    One to watch: Jordie Barrett
    Beauden’s younger brother has exploded onto the Super Rugby scene this season. Milner-Skudder’s injury has barely been noticed, as Barrett has filled in superbly, often linking with his brother for tries.

    This is his toughest test yet, and if he can keep this form up, there could well be an All Black call-up on the horizon.

    Prediction
    The Crusaders have home advantage and that will prove the difference here. After a slowish start, the Saders have been irresistible, blowing away opposition.

    In a blockbuster, akin to a finals game, the Hurricanes will certainly offer a tough test, but the men from the south will have just enough to keep their unbeaten run going.

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    The Crowd Says (34)

    • May 12th 2017 @ 5:04am
      mania said | May 12th 2017 @ 5:04am | ! Report

      the game of the season i reckon.
      i pray that its played in good spirit and neither team has injuries. everyone plays with honour and style
      and we see some awesome rugby
      to be the best you gotta beat the best.

      GAMON CANES!!!

      • Roar Guru

        May 12th 2017 @ 10:46am
        pformagg said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:46am | ! Report

        yep, hopefully no major injuries occur

    • May 12th 2017 @ 6:11am
      Ben said | May 12th 2017 @ 6:11am | ! Report

      Home advan may be trumped by the flight back from Joburg…as opposed to a 1 hour flight from Wgtn.

      • May 12th 2017 @ 7:19am
        Zero Gain said | May 12th 2017 @ 7:19am | ! Report

        One hour. What sort of planes do you have over there, dual wing?

        • Roar Guru

          May 12th 2017 @ 10:24am
          Wal said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:24am | ! Report

          Better than what we have here,
          CHCH to Wellington = 320km 50 minute flight
          Sydney to Port Maq = 321km 1hour 5 minutes

          • Roar Rookie

            May 12th 2017 @ 10:30am
            piru said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:30am | ! Report

            Does the 50 minutes include the time to wind the rubber band up?

            • Roar Rookie

              May 12th 2017 @ 10:34am
              Guvna said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:34am | ! Report

              Rubber bands? We wish we had rubber bands.

              • Roar Rookie

                May 12th 2017 @ 10:48am
                piru said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:48am | ! Report

                We use ta dream of ‘avin a roobber band!

            • Roar Guru

              May 12th 2017 @ 10:44am
              Wal said | May 12th 2017 @ 10:44am | ! Report

              No but if you have done that flight from Sydney to Port Macquarie you’ll know you all have to get out and push start the bloody thing.

          • May 12th 2017 @ 1:18pm
            dontcallmeshirley said | May 12th 2017 @ 1:18pm | ! Report

            Auckland to Dunedin 2hrs $120
            Perth to Exmouth 2 hrs $395

            • Roar Rookie

              May 12th 2017 @ 1:21pm
              piru said | May 12th 2017 @ 1:21pm | ! Report

              There’s more hills for the plane to get over in NZ

              • Roar Rookie

                May 12th 2017 @ 1:23pm
                piru said | May 12th 2017 @ 1:23pm | ! Report

                Also it’s only about half the distance, the planes in WA must be smashing along

              • Roar Guru

                May 12th 2017 @ 2:27pm
                Wal said | May 12th 2017 @ 2:27pm | ! Report

                Perth to Exmouth = 1138 km
                Auck – Dun = 1055km

              • Roar Rookie

                May 12th 2017 @ 2:39pm
                piru said | May 12th 2017 @ 2:39pm | ! Report

                Haha, dumb bugger here had one in miles the other in KMs

                carry on

            • May 12th 2017 @ 2:59pm
              scottd said | May 12th 2017 @ 2:59pm | ! Report

              Perth to Exmouth is a monopoly I think as the contract for supply was awarded by the WA government after tender. Someone might know more???

    • May 12th 2017 @ 6:21am
      moaman said | May 12th 2017 @ 6:21am | ! Report

      I have thought for weeks that the Crusaders would edge this….but i wouldn’t choose to put money on a particular result; a moment or two of brilliance might be all that is required to win this one.

    • May 12th 2017 @ 6:34am
      Ben said | May 12th 2017 @ 6:34am | ! Report

      Not sure about the sudden rearranging of the loosies with Shields 8 Princep 6 Ardie 7.
      This combo has played before but not in these positions.
      Word is Hansen asked for Shields to have a go at 8.
      Travel fatigue has to be a factor for the Crusaders so they probably start even stevens with home advan.

    • Roar Guru

      May 12th 2017 @ 7:16am
      Sam Taulelei said | May 12th 2017 @ 7:16am | ! Report

      Have been impressed by the Crusaders development and improvement throughout the season under Razor.

      They’ve earned respect due to their performances rather than past reputation.

      Both sides are evenly matched and are try scoring machines.

      Backing the Canes to do the business and win by a comfortable margin.

      Watch the Canes scrum surprise many experts tomorrow. They’re always underrated but they’ve been more destructive on opposition ball than their more vaunted Kiwi rivals purely because they’ve had no current All Blacks playing in their tight five.

      • May 12th 2017 @ 8:03pm
        stainlesssteve said | May 12th 2017 @ 8:03pm | ! Report

        Yes, Sam, first words of sense among the fly-by comments
        It’s never much more than a lottery, but the Hurricanes definitely have the advantage, and if the Barretts fire, it’ll be “good night, nurse”, within 20 minutes

      • May 13th 2017 @ 10:19pm
        Old Bugger said | May 13th 2017 @ 10:19pm | ! Report

        Sam

        Its the same as what he was doing with the Cantabs provincial side…I’m just surprised that everyone, didn’t expect this form, at all…?? The only reason he lost the U-20s WC was because of wet weather. If it was fine, the NZ Jnrs, had a damn good chance. All water under the bridge now – its obvious that Razor, has learned from his mistakes.

    • Roar Guru

      May 12th 2017 @ 9:37am
      Machooka said | May 12th 2017 @ 9:37am | ! Report

      I believe in the Diggercane household they’ve just had kittens. Cute fluffy little things.

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