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Saturday, June 25, 2011

The Blues head into the semi finals after win over the Waratahs

The Blues head into the semi finals after win over the Waratahs

This weekend the two qualifiers for the Super Rugby semi finals took place, with the Blues and Crusaders both heading through to the last four. The Blues beat the Waratahs 26-13 yesterday, so here's a look at some of the highlights if you missed the game. Other clips, such as tackles etc, might be posted separately.

The Waratahs, ravaged by injury, simply couldn't get up for this one as their lack depleted side struggled to cope with a strong second half showing from the the Blues.

Center Tom Carter, who scored for the 'Tahs, says that getting close simply isn't good enough.

"If this group is fair dinkum about winning the comp, we probably have a year or two left realistically. We can't keep blowing opportunities. We have made the semis three of the last four years and that's incredible, and we'd like people to recognise that. But we are also very aware that turning up and having a close semi-final isn't good enough in professional sport," he said.

Blues captain Keven Mealamu was predictably more upbeat following the win for the three-time champions. They will face the Reds in Brisbane next weekend.

"We're really happy with the way we're going at the moment," he said. "There was a lot of emotion during the week and that's probably why we didn't get off to as good a start as we would have liked.

"But after 20 minutes we got back into our work and I was really happy with the team."


Time: 03:48

Posted at 4:31 pm | 26 comments

Viewing 26 comments

Chris J June 25, 2011 3:30 pm

Couldn't be happier to see Ali Williams score. Especially after breaking both ankles. Good for him.

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 3:30 pm

i could have been first but decided not to be

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stefan June 25, 2011 3:42 pm

If anyone is looking for slightly longer highlights then go to TTRugbyVids' youtube channel, RD has used his stuff before.

Otherwise it's a shame the 'Tahs have so many first teamers out, would've been a much better game... I think the Reds will beat the Blues again at Suncorp though, the Brett-McAllister channel opened up quite a few times in this one and the Reds are clinical.

Loving Super Rugby!

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maxime June 25, 2011 4:35 pm

Goodbye Mr Waugh. Surely a great player.
As said above, really sad the Tahs had so many injuries. I really think this is one of the most entertaining teams to watch, surely better looking than the Blues who offer quite boring rugby.

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 5:20 pm

Anyone else notice former saracen Glen Jackson as the touch line official

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 5:38 pm

Why aint Ali williams' grubber kick ain't included in the highlights

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 5:44 pm

That was a pathetic attendance for a knock out game!

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cal June 25, 2011 5:53 pm

It definitely was poor attendance, and overall a lackluster atmosphere.

But whatever, that really doesn't matter (other than it's a shame). The game was the important thing, not the crowd.

And there were times when it was actually a pretty good game. It could've even been a great game, had it not been so wet and caused so many fumbles and turnovers. :\

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 7:06 pm

is there any reason why super 14 games are in huge, empty stadiums? is it a recent drop in numbers or what? shame cos its some of the best club rugby around.

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Anonymous June 25, 2011 7:06 pm

Is doug howlett still the S14/15 top try scorer?

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Askelkana June 25, 2011 9:49 pm

Can anyone answer me why players still go in after the ball has been grounded for a try? On the second try, the player scoring the try gets a nice knee in the ribs, which to me seemed totally uncalled for - there was no need to tackle him, as he was going to ground. I've seen this time and again, and I wonder is it just adrenalin or malice or what?

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Ollie June 26, 2011 12:45 am

Why do people care so much about crowd attendances?

I thought people came here to watch Rugby...

Anyway, it was a good game.

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Anonymous June 26, 2011 1:03 am

big tommy carter for the world cup!

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Anonymous June 26, 2011 11:09 am

there is always poor attendances at new zealand games...however in South Africa and Australia stadium are usually at or near capacity

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RedYeti June 26, 2011 11:54 am

Most SupeRugby games get as high an attendance as Premiership or Magners matches, they are just played in much much bigger stadiums, so the crowds look tiny. Club grounds in the UK are far smaller than the massive stadiums of SA...

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Anonymous June 26, 2011 7:46 pm

But in competition terms the Super 15 is more like the Heineken Cup and it could only be good for the sport if they strived for similar attendance figures.

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Veji1 June 26, 2011 8:00 pm

The attendance is horrible. In France for knockout stage they pack a 60 000 seats stadium, and Paris and Toulon pack 60 000 to 80 000 seaters 2/3 times a year each.

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N June 26, 2011 10:26 pm

The average attendence for Super Rugby is about 20,000 a match.
That;s thousands higher than the Heinken Cup or Top 14.

There is an issue with crowds in NZ at the moment.

But next week there'll be 50,000 at Suncorp, which means it'll be full and a similar number for the Stormers home game.

Then th final will be a sell out.

And Super Rugby will continue to have the highest attendence on average of any rugby tournament that doesn't invole national teams.

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Anonymous June 26, 2011 10:32 pm

Actually the ref noticed the late knee in Munroe's try and made a call, however no penalty given

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Bill June 27, 2011 12:15 am

Veji1, the attendences are horrible eh?
The Top 14 averaged 15,119 this season at games.
The Super Rugby tournament averaged 19,004 in the regular season.

So wtf are you talking about?

The Heineken Cup average attendence was 14,423 per match, so it's even lower.

Why would Super Rugby want to emulate lower crowds?

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Anonymous June 27, 2011 1:54 am

Yes our supporters are crap here in NZ. The only time you'll see a full stadium is for All Blacks games.

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RJ June 27, 2011 2:16 am

Then imagine how much more dominant NZ would be if they really cared about rugby...

It's all about quality, not quantity.

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sonny bill knockout June 29, 2011 12:15 am

the issue with attendance is 2 fold:

Curiosity about the low attendance at a knockout stage; and at playing these knockout games, where small crowds are expected, in massive stadiums. Both are perfectly valid queries. No need to get so defensive folks!

Yes attendance at HC matches is lowish before the knockouts, but that _not_ the case once it goes to the last 8. And it is impossible to get tickets to many of the matches in grounds that are small - even with Munster's bigger capacity, HC matches have no generic ticket availability at any stage. knockout or otherwise. They could get far bigger crowds than they can fit into the new Thomond. Many grounds in UK are essentially too small to house their teams now. Teams sometimes choose to stay at home for the more full on local crowd in a smaller stadium, than move to a bigger more anonymous one some matches, even if revenue would be higher in the bigger ground, as a win is more likely with the intense local small crowd.

But the overall point is - these smaller stadia are brimming full and at knockout they are simply too small. The opposite seems to be the case, when u have 20,000 at a knockout game in the SH equivalent of the HC.

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Bill June 29, 2011 5:08 am

Yeah, well that's basically a generalisation.
It's far more complex than you've tried to make it.

The truth is crowd problems exist for some teams, and not for others.

Some teams in Aus and SA are getting modest crowds (the Waratahs are having trouble - their average has dropped from over 30,000 a few years ago to just under 20,000 this season), while other have had increased crowds (The reds have incresed their averge to 30,000 this season while the top Saffer teams have gotten some massive crowds this season). But overall, this season, both the Aussie conference and the South African one have had an increase in corwds as a total figure and as an average

The real crowd issues are in NZ. There are issue in NZ, whether it's oversaturation of rugby for such a small population, the rising popularity of league and soccer or something else.

But in relation to the finals crowd figures, next week both Suncorp (50,000) and Newlands (45,000) will be sold out and if they were bigger stadiums would be able to sell even more tickets.

The final will also be a sell out if it takes place in Aus or SA.

And inr egards to overall crowd figures, it's just always a point of annoyance for Superugby fans when NH people critisize the crowds, despite the fact they get smaller average crowds to EVERY SINGLE one of their comeptitions.
It's ridiculous, because you never really hear the opposite critisism. Because no one in the south really cares that much what the crowds are in the north or how big the stadiums are. believe it or not, most true rugby fans in the south think the rising popularity of rugby in Europe is great.
If anything I'd love the crowds to be larger in Europe, but I also wouldn't critisize European rugby because they aren't as big as they are in Super rugby.

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ollie June 29, 2011 11:05 am

one thing that makes the crowds in the NH seem smaller is that the crowds are smaller....for the smaller competitions. The HC tends to have full stadiums all round, with more demand than supply. Esp knockout, as has been said.

Magners league in particular gets small crowds, apart from derby games.

(The classic mad one is Edinburgh playing in Murrayfield, which makes the Blues match in this posting seem positively overflowing with ppl!)

As an aside, how and why is league getting stronger in NZ?!?

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Bill June 29, 2011 11:00 pm

League is becoming more popular in NZ. Why?
Lots of reasons I guess. It's more of a working class game, and it's very popular with the Islander community in particular.
In league, as a player, you get alot more touches of the ball, make alot more tackles, so for alot of people it's more fun to play.
Plus the NZ Warriors in the NRL have become very popular, and the NZ national team won the league World Cup (which is really just between Aus, NZ and England).

By the way the HC is a great comp and the crowds for the big games are very impressive.
But the average is still less in the HC than it is in the T14 overall.

And about 5,000 per game less than the Super 15.

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