The Crusaders have played the Chiefs 38 times in Super Rugby since 1996, the Crusaders have won 23 games and lost 15, drawing none.
The defending champion Saders have won 12 of 17 home Super Rugby matches versus the Waikato side, losing just five times in Christchurch.
- The Crusaders have won seven of their last nine Super Rugby games against the Chiefs (L2), including each of their last two meetings.
- The Crusaders have won their last four Super Rugby home games on the bounce against the Chiefs, scoring 36.8 points per game in that stretch.
- The Chiefs have lost their last four Super Rugby away games, the last time they recorded a longer losing run on the road was a seven-match span from March 2010 to April 2011.
- The Chiefs made 12 clean breaks in their Round 2 defeat to the Highlanders in the 2021 Super Rugby Aotearoa campaign; the last time they made more in a single game against fellow New Zealand opposition was in Round 16, 2019 against the Crusaders (23).
- The Hamilton-based side has lost their last 10 Super Rugby matches.
- Ethan Blackadder has made 20 tackles throughout his two games in the 2021 Super Rugby Aotearoa campaign, the most of any player yet to miss a single attempt.
We are waiting for the kick-off.
1.00: PEEEP! We are underway in Christchurch at Orangetheory Stadium. The players and the crowd observed an impeccable Moment’s Silence in remembrance of the mosque shootings in Christchurch on March 15, 2019.
2.00: TRY! Damian McKenzie opens the scoring with a sensational run. The Chiefs went through the phases using the quick ball, keeping the Crusaders on their heels. Brad Weber sent the ball wide where Sean Wainui played McKenzie, who joined the line with a sublime angled run. The fullback slipped Leicester Fainga’anuku’s weak tackle, ran through Richie Mo’unga, and barged his way over the try-line. The TMO had to review but ruled in favour of the Chiefs. 0-5
3.00: CONVERSION! The 25-year-old playmaker converts his try. 0-7
5.00: McKenzie calls for the tee.
7.00: MISS! McKenzie pushes his kick wide of the posts.
8.00: George Bower is caught offside, McKenzie wants another crack at the posts.
9.00: PENALTY! McKenzie makes no mistake this time. 0-10
12.00: It has been all Chiefs so far, they have enjoyed 90% possession and territory since kick-off.
14.00: Illegal wheeling of the scrum by the Chiefs allows the home team to clear the danger.
16.00: TRY! Leicester Fainga’anuku, under pressure from McKenzie, scores the most sensational try in the corner after David Havili’s midfield break. Havili palmed away Etene Nanai-Seturo and sped away from the cover defence before a pin-point, floated skip-pass found the winger. The 21-year-old turned on the gas and dived for the corner flag; he managed to dot the ball down while keeping his left foot in the air. 5-10
17.00: MISS! Richie Mo’unga pushes the kick wide. 5-10
20.00: Fainga’anuku’s try has sparked the Crusaders into action. Scott Robertson’s men have had the better of the exchanges since the five-pointer. The visitors are under the pump, here.
22.00: Despite the fightback, the chiefs are still enjoying two-thirds possession and territory.
24.00: Michael Alaalatoa has a crack at the line –– after a driving maul is well defended by the Chiefs –– but the tighthead prop is held up over the goal-line: goal-line drop-out to the Chiefs.
27.00: PENALTY! Mo’unga, from in front, cuts the gap to two points. 8-10
30.00: Mo’unga breaks down the sideline, he doesn’t play Reece; instead, he cuts inside and almost gets to the whitewash. The Chiefs had given up a penalty-advantage in the build-up for offsides. Scott Barrett wants to scrum.
31.00: The hosts win another penalty, Mo’unga calls for the tee.
32.00: PENALTY! Mo’unga puts his team ahead for the first time. 11-10
34.00: Robertson’s men have turned around the momentum of the game. They are in front, they have the better of both territory (55%) and possession (56%); they have made 171 metres to 81 on only four runs fewer than the Waikato side, while the penalties are mounting against the Chiefs: 8 to 2.
36.00: Well defended by the Chiefs, who won a turnover near their try line, and clear.
38.00: Clayton McMillan’s side earns a penalty in a kickable position. McKenzie calls for the tee.
41.00: MISS! Oh, dear! McKenzie pulls his attempt wide; he shouldn’t be missing from there. 11-10
The halftime score was Crusaders 11 Chiefs 10
41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Christchurch, New Zealand.
43.00: The home team have come out flying, playing ‘keep-ball’ for 14 phases, probing the defence of the visitors. Mo’unga, eventually, found a gap and sped away. He saw Tom Christie alone on the wing, sent a long pass to the flanker, who stumbled and fell into the defenders. The Crusaders infringed at the ruck, which allowed Bryn Gatland to clear.
44.00: Another scything break by Mo’unga ends in the hosts bombarding the opposition’s try line; however, the ball is held-up. The Crusaders are awarded a penalty, but a ‘Captain’s Refereral’ by Sam Cane for a forward pass by Mo’unga in the lead up to the penalty, is unsuccessful because Weber’s hand knocked the ball backwards. This looks like a poor call by Paul Williams, the ref. He is now checking for offside by Weber, and a potential penalty try.
44.00: YELLOW CARD! PENALTY TRY! Weber is sent to the sin-bin for a deliberate knock-down before Mo’unga’s pass. How has the ref messed that up, that is terrible because the replay shows Weber never touched the ball. 18-10
46.00: NO TRY! Mitchell Drummond’s try is chalked off for a forward pass by Sevu Reece. 18-10
50.00: Chiefs under pressure, they conceded another scrum-penalty, which sees Mo’unga kick to the corner.
53.00: The Chiefs win the turnover, and clear through Gatland.
55.00: TRY! Will Jordan, coming from depth, runs a scything angle at two forwards, takes Mo’unga’s delayed inside-pass and ghosts through to score under the posts. 23-10
56.00: CONVERSION! The kick is good. 25-10
58.00: MASSIVE SCRUM! The Chiefs’ pack has been demolished tonight.
61.00: Another scrum-penalty; Mo’unga goes to the corner.
63.00: TRY! Whetukamokamo Douglas sells a dummy and barges over the chalk for the bonus-point score. It was a sublime attack, especially the handling by the home team’s forwards, who offloaded like backs to set up the try. 30-10
64.00: CONVERSION! Mo’unga racks up the points. 32-10
68.00: It’s all Saders, who are battering away at the line.
69..00: TRY! Mitchell Dunshea walks over to dot down the fifth try of the night. 37-10
70.00: CONVERSION! Fergus Burke adds the extras. 39-10
71.00: Chiefs are on a rare attack in this lopsided second-half.
73.00: TRY! Etene Nanai-Seturo pulls one back for the visitors. 39-15
74.00: CONVERSION! McKenzie slots the sideline kick. 39-17
77.00: Crusaders go close again, but no try.
81.00: The hosts rip the ball from the defender, the hooter sounds, and the referee puts the Chiefs out of their misery.
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The final score is Crusaders 39 (11) Chiefs 17 (10)
Tries – Fainga’anuku, Penalty try, Jordan, Douglas, Dunshea
Pen – Mo’unga (2)
Con – Mo’unga (2), Burke
Tries – McKenzie, Nanai-Seturo
Pen – McKenzie
Con – McKenzie (2)
Cards – Weber (Yellow, 44′)
Referee: James Doleman
Assistant Ref 1: Brendon Pickerill
Assistant Ref 2: Ben O’Keeffe
TMO: Paul Williams
15 Will Jordan, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 David Havili, 11 Leicester Fainga’anuku, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Whetukamokamo Douglas, 7 Tom Christie, 6 Sione Havili Talitui, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Scott Barrett (captain), 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 George Bower
Replacements: 16 Brodie McAlister, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Fletcher Newell, 19 Mitchell Dunshea, 20 Quinten Strange, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Fergus Burke, 23 Dallas McLeod
15 Damian McKenzie, 14 Shaun Stevenson, 13 Sean Wainui, 12 Quinn Tupaea, 11 Etene Nanai-Seturo, 10 Bryn Gatland, 9 Brad Weber (co-captain), 8 Luke Jacobson, 7 Sam Cane (co-captain), 6 Mitchell Brown, 5 Josh Lord, 4 Tupou Vaa’i, 3 Angus Ta’avao, 2 Samisoni Taukei’aho, 1 Reuben O’Neill
Replacements: 16 Bradley Slater, 17 Aidan Ross, 18 Sione Mafileo, 19 Naitoa Ah Kuoi, 20 Kaylum Boshier, 21 Te Toiroa Tahuriorangi, 22 Anton Lienert-Brown, 23 Chase Tiatia