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Monday, July 04, 2011

The Crusaders beat the Stormers to set up final vs the Reds

The Crusaders beat the Stormers to set up final vs the Reds

The Crusaders proved too strong for the Stormers in Cape Town on Saturday as they won the second Super Rugby semifinal 29-10, setting up a final meeting with the Reds in Brisbane next weekend.

On paper the Crusaders always looked the stronger side, but the long haul over from New Zealand and playing a knockout match last weekend perhaps lulled the Stormers into a false sense of security.

The visitors, now looking to achieve their eighth title, dominated the game and rarely looked threatened, so much so that the last quarter of the match was fairly dour. The Stormers, with their fantastic defensive record, conceded tries through and intercept, and a piece of Sonny Bill Williams magic. He had a fairly quiet game otherwise.

Dan Carter scored 19 points in total with his five penalties and two conversions. Richie McCaw said that he was proud of the team's performance in the face of adversity.

"I am really proud of what the team achieved," McCaw said. "We decided after the earthquakes to stand up for the people at home and that is what we did here. All the travel we have had to do was not fun, but you recover and gear up for a supreme effort come each match day. It was a great team effort with special praise for our tight five."

For the Stormers, the loss of Schalk Burger didn't help. He has since been rules out of the away leg of the upcoming Tri Nations after he had surgery on his dislocated thumb. He will be out for six to eight weeks.

The Crusaders now travel again, this time to Brisbane, to face the Queensland Reds at Suncorp Stadium. That match takes place on Saturday.


Time: 04:26

Posted at 5:41 pm | 43 comments

Viewing 43 comments

Phil July 04, 2011 9:17 pm

Quade Cooper is pretty special isn't he?

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Anonymous July 04, 2011 9:22 pm

Wrong thread mate

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Douglas July 04, 2011 9:28 pm

Dominant performance from the Crusaders forward pack. Crockett really putting his hand up for an All Blacks recall, he and Franks just destroyed the Stormers scrum.

The All Blacks setup won't be very different from the Crusaders blueprint: establish dominance in the scrums and the collisions, Carter adds the decision making/tactical kicking, and unleash that dangerous backline when you're at the right end of the park.

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Anonymous July 04, 2011 9:48 pm

is freuan challenging for an all blacks spot? obviously smith is class but freuan has had a storming season and his partnership with sbw and dc must be a positive. hope he gets a run in the tri nations.

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Luxi July 04, 2011 11:36 pm

I was also thinking about that, anybody else reckon Robbie freuan is gonna challenge for a RWC ?
DC is just all round class
Crusaders looking good

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 12:49 am

Did I just see another SBW offload that resulted in a try? Thought his offload would have been found out by now??? Looks like he even did it with fourie one of the best centres in the world trying to tackle him.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 1:26 am

surely shalk britz wasnt put on at 12??

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mise July 05, 2011 1:53 am

note to the usually excellent J Fourie : swop the ball over to the other arm if a tackler is coming in on the side the ball is on.
sheesh....

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 2:30 am

People know SBW will offload.
But knowing he'll do it and stopping him from doing it, are two very different things.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 3:28 am

Peter grant is a wonderful 10, he makes it look very easy... Must be a bok option? As a kiwi watching him, it's always very impressive. Regardless of quades flair I still rate the bok as the most dangerous team for the ab's this year

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Ned2or3 July 05, 2011 3:30 am

A majority of the talk (in Oz Media) has been about the scrum performance os the Saders... any vision??

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 3:50 am

Crusaders have bored me recently, DC kicks the cover off the ball and they are relying on a power set piece and forward game plan. Ehh im not sold on them or the All Blacks. Reds should beat them and the Wallabies will beat the ABs in the WC final.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 4:30 am

Would prefer to watch a HC over super rugby final any day of the week. I seriously don't know how people can say this is good standard of rugby. This is not real rugby. Watch the NH and you'll see real rugby!!

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 4:36 am

^^What a lame attempt at trolling.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 4:38 am

Fruean will get his chance to shine in some of the earlier tests and the way he's been playing he certainly deserves it.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 4:53 am

"Would prefer to watch a HC over super rugby final any day of the week. I seriously don't know how people can say this is good standard of rugby. This is not real rugby. Watch the NH and you'll see real rugby!!"

hahahaha, pity about you losing all the time. Must suck to lose when the team beating the snot out of you isn't playing "real rugby".
Awesome, just awesome. Go tell the All Blacks, how they don't play real rugby. Maybe they'll play like a NH team, then you'll have a shot at beating them!

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 5:29 am

All blacks are cheats that's how they win. If the all blacks weren't looked after by the irb then they would lose most of the time

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Dendy July 05, 2011 6:01 am

The trolling is getting more and more lame by the hour, or is it just plain ignorance about Rugby Union?

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 6:39 am

"All blacks are cheats that's how they win. If the all blacks weren't looked after by the irb then they would lose most of the time"

ooooh, you're an ididot. My mistake.

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Ben July 05, 2011 7:23 am

Great tackle by Guildford on Fourie. I really hope he can reclaim an all black spot.

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I hate ppl who write July 05, 2011 8:20 am

On behalf of actual NH rugby fans I would like to apologise for the above troll who doesn't seem to realise that games get more tense as you near the end of a competition.

That said, I wonder what's going through the editors head when he puts 2mins of kicking in a 5min clip, would rather see tackles to be honest.

Wouls see Aus as the biggest danger for NZ come WC, Beale, Cooper and O'Conner are in their element at the moment. I think the ABs would need to play below their best to be beaten though, if they're on song I think they're a big step ahead.

Regards to them being cheats...isn't that getting old? 6pts clear at top of the rankings is quite a stat.

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TommyTucker July 05, 2011 9:05 am

really dissapointing performance from the stomers, they just didnt turn up. Great tight 5 of the crusaders and shows can win games from good platforms. Just a pity the kiwis will choke at this years RWC.

Hope the Reds win, more exciting to watch and dont constantly slow down and enfringe at the rucks.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 9:24 am

Kicking goals wins you competitions, thats why NZ struggle at WCs and England do well. Its not attractive and not entertaining, but who has the best record at World cups this century? Aussies do annoy me with their quips though - they wanted points for kicking reduced after Wilko beat them in 2003, they want scrummaging toned down now as they dont have a front 5, what next! I love watching them play and Robbie Deans has done an amazing job but dont try and change the rules to suit your type of game or England will start petitioning for 5 points for penalties and 3 for tries!!

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 10:54 am

Is it just me or is it looking a little worrying in the forwards for the Boks?

I know this was hardly a Bok pack but seems they got completely done over by the Crusaders pack (who also destroyed the Sharks pack when I watched them at Twickenham - and that was pretty much a Bok front row)

Also, can anyone tell me how Brits got on?

Other reviews seem to say he was the brightest spark in the Stormers pack once he came on. All I can see from the highlights is the nice off-load that led to the disallowed try

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GTI July 05, 2011 10:58 am

nice game to watch. Habana showed real leader qualities I think!
About the All Blacks:
How much better 13s are there than Fruean? Smith? maybe..
inside centre should be SBW/Nonu and outside centre Smith/Fruean

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 11:21 am

Look at the last world cup England made the final after a very poor year. This year however England are firing and sent a clear warning after another win against oz. Even Wales took it to the abs almost winning in nz.

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edbok July 05, 2011 12:43 pm

Well done to the Crusaders, huge effort after all the travelling and a serious hiding handed down to the Stormers.

One thing this game should however put to rest is the need for neutral referees. All that matters is that they are good enough.

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Wolfman July 05, 2011 1:00 pm

I thought Schalk Brits was class when he came on. He took the game to the Crusaders, and played clever, enterprising rugby. Broke the South African mould of big backrowers carting the ball up, and really added enterprise and creativity.

He also put himself about physically, hitting a couple of rucks and making a couple of tackles. The Stormers, especially on their own ball, didn't commit enough players to the rucks.

His offload in the clip was made inbetween Carter and McCaw - thats pretty impressive. Its a shame Louw can't carry the ball in two hands, and Fourie can't hold the ball under the correct arm.

However, the Stormers scrum struggled, and it was a risk playing him for parts at 8, and playing him on the flank. The Stormers backrow didn't stayed attached to the scrums long enough, which obviously influenced the tight five. Brits didn't have the experience at flank to realise this and adapt.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 2:41 pm

Brits should really play in the back row.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 2:46 pm

Crusaders easily won the game, outplaying The Stormers at every aspect.

Shalk Britz was looking good as ever, still can't believe he's being overlooked. [sarcasm]Shows how good the SA selectors are!![sarcasm]

Can't see SA doing any real damage in the WC, New Zeeland wil beat anyone if they play at there full potential. But always rooting for England! Can't see them loosing 2 anyway but the AB's if they play too there full potential.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 3:21 pm

Even if England played to their full potential, they could be beaten by NZ, AUS, SA, IRE, FRA, maybe even ARG. No offense mate, but England haven't come close to their 2003 team for years.

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Anonymous July 05, 2011 4:15 pm

if fourie did the simple thing of bending his legs he could've been a try.

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JG July 05, 2011 9:29 pm

Only 4 teams really in with a chance for the WC this year, Aus, NZ, Boks & England. A couple on this thread have related S15 to national sides, I wouldn't do that. The national sides always play differently to the S15 sides. The boks will be hurting after last years losses so have a point to prove. Saying that NZ and Aus definately deserve their 1 & 2 spots, will be watching the Tri Nations with interest.

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N July 05, 2011 11:24 pm

I agree with JG.
Boks will still be a massive threat.
International rugby is different.

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Canadian content July 06, 2011 1:53 am

I thought fourie's mistake was more to do with his angle of run (too much towards the corner flag) rather than anything else. He's big enuff to power over from that distance on one tackler. But who am I to question a world class player. A world class blogger that's who!

SWB's offload is incredibly deadly, no way the tackle could stop it. Freun's support line was just as impressive. Perhaps the strategy is to have a one on one tackle, allow swb to drag the defender but guard against the offload?

Good to hear Brits had a good game.

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Anonymous July 06, 2011 3:48 am

The rpoblem with that, Canadian, is that he can break tackle too, and it often takes two men to get him down. And even with two or sometiems three guys hanging off him, he still gets the offload away half the time.
That's why he's so dangerous.

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Anonymous July 06, 2011 6:19 am

I'm just impressed that Sonny Bill was able to offload like that from a solid tackle.

If I were Henry, I'd be keen to use the Tri-Nations to experiment Sonny Bill in the starting line-up and Nonu as impact player on tired defences.

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I hate ppl who write July 06, 2011 11:11 am

agree with JG right up until the &England bit. I think they're lacking to be honest. If Ireland can rip them apart on a Grand Slam decider I'd hate to think what NZ or Aus will do to them.
Aus will be out to prove a point after the test upset so I wouldn't expect a repeat there

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Anonymous July 06, 2011 2:41 pm

I think you're under-playing Ireland there to be honest. If they played against Aus like they did against england, they'd have torn the Wallabies a new one

Its just as well for other teams that the Celtic nations only seem able to produce these one-off performances against England

As for the Wallabies,after having beaten them home and away, I think they will hold little fear for England

To me, Aus are lacking the strength in depth to be truly competitive (I also think their pack is still lacking). And whilst Cooper can be sublime, he can also often be a liability

NZ on the other hand, are really something to worry about...

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Anonymous July 06, 2011 5:47 pm

well, this tri nations is going to be a diluted one I think, I just read the "injury list" of the Boks. (my team) and every starter is unavailable for the away leg of the comp- which means basically, as jake white did . the team is resting. this trinations could also be more exciting since a lot of young guns have things to proove. lots of experimenting going on i think this year. from all teams. pity about aus with so many injuries but they also have some young guns who have been amazing this year. particularly the reds centers over the brumbies ones.
-me

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Anonymous July 06, 2011 11:34 pm

Ireland only produce those kind of performances at home, almost never away from home.
And Australia has a better team and record, both against ireland and at the world cup.
The last four times Aus has played Ireland it's been three wins Aus, one draw.
Aus doesn't have a bad pack, they just have a scrum issue. That's literally the only aspect of forward play they struggle with.
And just cuz Ireland beat England does NOT mean they could d the same to Aus.

We'll see in the world cup, Ireland are capable of causing the upset, but without a doubt they are not favorites.

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I hate ppl who write July 07, 2011 2:00 pm

^^^I think you're making exactly the same point as the Anon you are answering to be honest.
As an Irishman I'm more frustrated than anyone at how we can almost never produce when it really matters(RWC2007 most glaring eg). The guy is right, if Ireland could play every game the way they play against Eng they would be a real threat to anyone.
Of course they're not favorites, and to be honest I'm glad of that. The underdog tag seems to sit much better with us. We have to get it out of our heads that it's acceptable to lose to Aus, NZ and SA and believe a little more. Attitude counts in rugby

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Anonymous July 07, 2011 4:23 pm

The Irish looked good because England were bad. The halfbacks played bad, and Tindal was missed as defensive organiser in the backline.
Not taking anything away of the Irish they've got a quality team but I can't see them beating any big team away from home.

I agree with most people here in saying that Eng,Aus,NZ and SA will be the main contenders but can't see SA doing much. I think they're too static, and alot of there key players are at the end of there career.

As for England if Youngs and Flood/JW can ignite the team, I can see them getting into the final. Altough it might be a bit too early for this squad.

The AB's will beat anyway if Carters playing and not let the pressure get to them.

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