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Hurricanes v Lions Super Rugby Final Preview

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The 2016 Super Rugby final will be in Wellington New Zealand where the Hurricanes will host the Lions from Johannesburg.

Whatever happens on Saturday in the Super Rugby we will have a new Super Rugby champion as neither side has won a title in the professional era.

The Lions have won a Super (10) Rugby title but that was in 1993 when they beat Auckland and this is not considered to be Super Rugby title as Super Rugby in the professional era began in 1996 with the Super 12.

This will be the Lions first appearance in a Super Rugby final and the Hurricanes third appearance as they also contested the 2006 (in the Christchurch fog ) Super Rugby final and last year’s Super Rugby final.

Should the Hurricanes win and take the Super Rugby title New Zealand Rugby will become the first nation to have all of their teams win a Super Rugby title.

The Hurricanes and the Lions have already played the Lions once this season and they beat them 17-50 in Johannesburg. Since then the Lions have improved and are playing with a lot more confidence.

Overall the Hurricanes have played the Lions 17 times since 1996 and the Hurricanes have won 14 matches or 82% of their matches. There have been no draws.

The Super Rugby final will be played in Wellington where the teams have met 6 times and the Hurricanes have won all of these matches. The Hurricanes also beat the Lions in Palmerston North (2000) and in New Plymouth (1998).

The Lions have never beaten the Hurricanes on New Zealand soil and the average score when the Hurricanes play the Lions at home is : Hurricanes 34 Lions 20.

Hurricanes have won the last seven matches between the teams regardless of the venue. This means that the last time the Lions beat the Hurricanes was in 2007.

The Hurricanes have included team captain Dane Coles for this match. He is however bracketed with Ricky Riccitelli and will face a late fitness test and if fit he would be the only potential change to the team that started the semifinal win over the Chiefs

The Hurricanes will also have to make two late calls in the reserves. Openside Callum Gibbins, who missed the semifinal with an Achilles injury, has once again been bracketed with Tony Lamborn, while prop Reggie Goodes has also been bracketed with Mike Kainga as he continues to work through concussion protocols.

The Lions have included captain Warren Whiteley in their starting line up after he missed the Semi-final against the Highlanders. Whiteley comes into the side replacing Ruan Ackerman which is the only change to the starting side.

Wet weather conditions in Wellington which are forecast to be cold, wet and windy. This could play into the Hurricanes hands as they beat the Sharks 41-0 in the quarter final and they showed no signs whatsoever of battling with the weather despite some awful conditions.

No team has crossed the Indian Ocean for the final and won. The Crusaders came the closest by crossing the Tasman and beating the Brumbies. Should the Lions win the title they will be the second South African team to win a Super Rugby title and the first since the Bulls claimed the last of their three titles in 2010.

The match will come down to the Hurricanes defence and the Lions attack. The Lions have scored the most tries this year but the Hurricanes have kept their opponents tryless through the play offs and no one has scored a try against them in 221 minutes. The Chiefs are second in the try scoring stats behind the Lions and they were kept tryless in the Semi-final.

The Hurricanes are a very settled side and haven’t traveled for a month. They will be playing in front of a sold out home crowd and have more experience in playing under the pressure of a Super Rugby final and have learned from last year. It should also not be forgotten that they finished the season on top of the standings despite being in the toughest of New Zealand Conferences.

The Bookies have given the Lions an 8 point start for this Match – with an offer of up to $200 in Bonus bets. The Hurricanes have only lost once at home this season and that was by a point. Home advantage is crucial in Super Rugby and that is what teams play for all year – to be in the final at home. The Hurricanes will have home advantage and a local New Zealand Referee. Everything points to the Hurricanes winning so they should win this by 9. 

This Match will be shown on TV in NZ (Sky), Aus (Fox Sports), SA (SuperSport) and in the UK on Sky Sports 3/HD.

Average score: Hurricanes 31 Lions 23

Last five results
30 Apr 2016 Hurricanes v Lions 50-17 Johannesburg
13 Feb 2015 Hurricanes v Lions 22-8 Johannesburg
02 Mar 2012 Hurricanes v Lions 30-28 Johannesburg
04 Jun 2011 Hurricanes v Lions 38-27 Wellington
27 Feb 2010 Hurricanes v Lions 33-18 Wellington

Hurricanes overall record against the Lions
Played 17, Wins 14, Losses 3 , Draws 0

Match No.142 :Hurricanes v Lions
Date : Saturday 6 August 2016
Venue : Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Kick Off local: 19:35 local
Referee: Glen Jackson
Assistant Ref 1:Angus Gardner
Assistant Ref 2:Ben O’Keeffe
TMO : Ben Skeen

Teams

Hurricanes

15 James Marshall , 14 Cory Jane , 13 Matt Proctor , 12 Willis Halaholo , 11 Jason Woodward , 10 Beauden Barrett , 9 TJ Perenara (c) , 8 Victor Vito , 7 Ardie Savea , 6 Brad Shields , 5 Michael Fatialofa , 4 Vaea Fifita , 3 Ben May , 2 Dane Coles (c)/Ricky Riccitelli , 1 Loni Uhila

Replacements: Ricky Riccitelli/Leni Apisai, Chris Eves, Reggie Goodes/ Michael Kainga, Mark Abbott, Callum Gibbins/Tony Lamborn, Jamison Gibson-Park, Vince Aso, Julian Savea. ,

Lions

1 Dylan Smith , 2 Malcolm Marx , 3 Julian Redelinghuys , 4 Andries Ferreira , 5 Franco Mostert , 6 Jaco Kriel , 7 Warwick Tecklenburg , 8 Warren Whiteley (c), 9 Faf De Klerk , 10 Elton Jantjies , 11 Courtnal Skosan , 12 Rohan Janse Van Rensburg , 13 Lionel Mapoe , 14 Ruan Combrinck , 15 Andries Coetzee

Replacements: 16. Armand Van Der Merwe , 17. Corne Fourie , 18. Jacques Van Rooyen , 19. Lourens Erasmus,20. Ruan Ackermann ,21.Ross Cronje,22. Howard Mnisi ,23. Jaco Van Der Walt

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16 Comments

  1. Daniel Juba

    4th August 2016 at 3:00 pm

    I am a strong supporter of the Lions even more since they won the currycup back in 2011 and did the unthinkable against the Sharks! So I believe they can do the unthinkable again this saterday!They are the underdogs!! Go Lions Go!!!!!

    • Rob

      5th August 2016 at 8:46 am

      dont you mean underloins bahahhaha

  2. willem

    4th August 2016 at 5:42 pm

    Odds was against the Lions since their first knock out match, but ended up beating their NZ opponents by quite a margin. The hurricanes also seem overconfident, already talking about thrashing the Lions…I believe the match is going to be super tight and the Lions can make history. Go lions!!

    • Super Rugby

      4th August 2016 at 5:49 pm

      The Lions also had home advantage, SA refs and didnt have to travel in those matches. Just saying.

      • Liu

        5th August 2016 at 1:13 am

        The Lion also beats the Chief in NZ. Just saying.

    • Garfunkel

      4th August 2016 at 11:55 pm

      Mate not ONE of the Canes players are overconfident or have said they will thrash the Lions. Their Fans on the other hand have every right to feel confident as do the Lions fans. You could be reading your own comments while looking at yourself in the mirror. All I know is we will have a great game of Rugby and one of the Teams will make history!! Good luck but GO THE MIGHTY CANES!!

    • Garfunkel

      4th August 2016 at 11:56 pm

      Mate not ONE of the Canes players are overconfident or have said they will thrash the Lions. Their Fans on the other hand have every right to feel confident as do the Lions fans. You could be reading your own comments while looking at yourself in the mirror. All I know is we will have a great game of Rugby and one of the Teams will make history!! Good luck but GO THE MIGHTY CANES!!

  3. Giedion

    5th August 2016 at 1:52 am

    Losers always complain about their best, winners just go out and do it…

    go Lions leave everything on the field, no excuses, no buts and ifs.

    all the best to both teams and may the best team win.

  4. Skokiaan

    5th August 2016 at 6:10 am

    The Lions are capable of the most electrifying play making I have seen in a long time and that includes every franchise in Super Rugby. Also, they have played all the NZ teams this season and won with convincing totals in most games even on NZ soil with NZ refs.
    The cold and wet might be their biggest problems for ball control, but the latest weather report suggests it might not be too wet and wind is not likely to be anything like when the Sharks played their quarter final in Wellington.
    Expect the unexpected and a tense, free-flowing match!

  5. Gerrie Camacho

    5th August 2016 at 6:58 am

    Lions dont stop hunting and are just as effective hunters regardless if pouring rain of dry! They adapt well! they stay true to theif nature! Being successful in the hunt means to stick together, work as a team and do what they do best!! They don’t give up untill they have the prey down and out! Find food, focus, make the kill, feed on the prey and enjoy the price! Hunt those Hurricanes! Go all the way Lions!!

  6. Adrian

    5th August 2016 at 10:53 am

    Rain is a problem for the Lions? Did everyone forget the Lions vs. Blues match in Johannesburg?

    • Gerrie Camacho

      5th August 2016 at 11:26 am

      Real Lions hunt even better in rain!

  7. Mark

    5th August 2016 at 11:02 am

    It is snowing on the hills surrounding Wellington. It is really cold. The Hurricanes are used to playing in this sort of weather. The Lions, not sure? Good luck to both teams. Should be a good match

  8. AthleticPark

    5th August 2016 at 8:42 pm

    This is a VERY good Lions side. They were unbelievable against a quality Highlanders side – they made the Landers look average! The Canes have been building their form over recent weeks and are currently playing the best rugby I have seen from ANY Canes side, ever. For me, this is a pick ’em. The thing that tips it slightly for the Canes is home advantage, and zero knockout-stage travel. NOT THE REFEREE! (Glen Jackson is nothing if not professional!). However, the biggest thing is the Canes’ ability to choke and stifle potent attacking sides with their superb defensive organisation. They’ve always been great in attack, but erratic with results because they were inconsistent defensively. Not the case right now. This is a complete side. Therefore, the Canes should win by a narrow margin. As a Canes supporter, I hope I’m right.

  9. Denver the lion

    6th August 2016 at 5:11 am

    This dude keeps on commenting on local refs favouring local teams. Are u serious dude? He’s articles are old fashion and he needs to do a bit of homework before he attempts another one.

  10. Denver the lion

    6th August 2016 at 6:14 am

    Screw the guy who wrote this article. #gobacktoschool

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