Scores updated each minute. REFRESH NOW
Crusaders vs Hurricanes
Super Rugby, 25 May, 2018
|Fulltime - Crusaders 24, Hurricanes 13|
|Referee: Angus Gardner|
|Touch judges: Ben O'Keeffe & James Doleman|
|TMO: Aaron Paterson|
Anyone can contribute to The Roar and have their work featured alongside some of Australia’s most prominent sports journalists.
The Crusaders and Hurricanes will slug it out for the number one spot in Super Rugby as these two high flyers clash in Christchurch to kick off Round 15. Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the match, starting from 5:25pm (AEST).
This is the glamour tie of the whole round as the best two teams in this year’s competition go up against each other for the second time. In Round 4, the Canes took the honours and dished out one of the two losses the Crusaders have suffered this season.
Both sides have some serious momentum behind them and it’ll be fascinating to see how each of them goes about trying to break the other down. There is going to be some serious talent on the same field in this match with the Canes’ backline looking incredibly strong.
The news that the Wellington side had to bring in a new centre pairing might have momentarily got a few Crusaders fans wondering if this would present a weakness for their team exploit. However, that thought wouldn’t have lasted long once they read that the new pairing was Jordie Barrett and Ngani Laumape and that the other rejigging in the Canes three quarters will see a back three of Nehe Milner-Skudder, Julian Savea and Ben Lam.
That is some serious firepower and all being conducted by the maestros Beauden Barrett and TJ Perenara.
Up front, the Canes will also be excited to welcome back Brad Shields and Michael Fatialofa, who will bring some important grunt and power up front. If the forwards can give Perenara and Barrett quick, front-foot ball then the Crusaders will find it very hard to keep the Canes out.
Things will even harder for the home side as a result of missing some of their key talent including Tim Perry, Owen Franks and Ryan Crotty while super sub Manasa Mataele (third highest try scorer in the competition this season) is missing through injury too.
In the past couple of weeks, the Crusaders have had to work harder than they might have expected to get their wins. Their comeback against the Waratahs two weeks ago was definitely an impressive performance but you can’t help but feel that if they give the Hurricanes a 29-point lead, the Wellington side will not fail to kill off the game like the Sydneysiders did.
Interestingly, the reigning champions have made things harder for themselves this year so far with more yellow cards (nine) than any other side and do risk losing their number one spot on the overall ladder to the Hurricanes in this game. If the Canes can get over the top of them then they will not only take the top spot, but will also still have a game in hand over the Crusaders putting them very much in the driving seat for the rest of the regular season.
If this game lives up to the hype than it is going to be an absolute belter. The bookies can’t split them but here at The Roar we’d made of sterner stuff!
The Crusaders are reigning champs and current competition leaders for a reason and have won games in all sorts of situations this season. However, the amount of firepower that the Canes have both up front and in their backs, combined with the fact that Beauden Barrett will be in charge, gives the Wellington side the edge in this clash.
Hurricanes by 8.
Join The Roar for live scores and a blog of the Crusaders versus Hurricanes match, starting from 17:35 (AEST) tonight.