The Crusaders have played the Hurricanes 37 times in Super Rugby since 1996, the Crusaders have won 22 matches, lost 12 times and drawn three times.
The Crusaders’ 22 wins give them a record of winning 60% of their matches against the Hurricanes regardless of venue.
- The Crusaders have won their last four Super Rugby games on the bounce against the Hurricanes; the only previous time either team managed to win more games in succession in this fixture was a seven-game stretch for the defending champions from 2005 to 2008.
- This will be the sixth finals meeting between the teams in Super Rugby, the Crusaders have won each of the previous five by an average margin of 20 points per game.
- The Crusaders have won their last seven post-season games in succession in Super Rugby; only once in the competition’s history has any team won more (9 – Crusaders from 1998 to 2003).
- The Saders are undefeated in their last 29 Super Rugby games on home turf (W28, D1); their last defeat in such a fixture came in Round 17, 2016 against the Hurricanes.
- The Hurricanes have won only one of their nine previous finals games away from home in Super Rugby, with five of their eight defeats in that span coming at the hands of the Crusaders.
- The Canes have won their last four New Zealand derbies in Super Rugby despite leading at half-time only twice in that time.
- The Crusaders have scored more points (33), made more carries (126), gained more metres (506), and made more clean breaks (15) per game than any other team in Super Rugby 2019.
- The Hurricanes have conceded just five tries within the final quarter of games this Super Rugby season, fewer than any other team in the competition.
- Sevu Reece has made 36 clean breaks in Super Rugby 2019, eight more than any other player in the competition and 14 more than Hurricanes’ best Jordie Barrett (22).
- Ardie Savea has won 28 turnovers this Super Rugby campaign, five more than any other player in the competition and 11 more than Crusaders’ best Matt Todd (17).
We are waiting for the kick-off.
In the meantime why not have a look at the match preview.
1.00: PEEEEP! We are underway at fortress AMI Stadium, Christchurch, where the defending champions Crusaders are looking to make it 23 from 23 home playoff matches and book another home Super Rugby final.
2.00: Gareth Evans is pinged for collapsing the maul at the first lineout and Richie Mo’unga will take a shot.
3.00: PENALTY! Mo’unga opens the scoring with a crisp kick. 3-0
5.00: The Hurricanes are kicking everything; they have kicked the ball away every time they have had possession, which will not work against Scott Robertson’s men.
7.00: The first scrum of the game is reset.
10.00: Scott Barrett gets back to force the error from TJ Perenara after the visitors’ first foray into Crusaders territory.
11.00: Jordie Barrett’s kick is out, but only just outside his 22.
12.00: Beauden and Jordie combine before the older brother’s innovative banana kick releases some pressure.
13.00: TRY! Sevu Reece you beauty! That is stunning by Ryan Crotty, whose raking cross-kick bounces into the arms of Reece for his 14th Super Rugby try of the season. 8-0
15.00: CONVERSION! Mo’unga swings his conversion between the sticks. 10-0
17.00: MISS! Beauden Barrett, from 50 metres out, hits the post. David Havili gathers and clears to halfway. 10-0
19.00: John Plumtree’s men are kicking everything, but not winning the aerial contests. They should use the ball in hand because that is what the Canes are good at.
21.00: The Hurricanes’ outside backs and three quarters have hardly touched the ball except to clear with the boot.
24.00: The home team win a lineout against the throw and are on the charge into enemy territory.
25.00: Salesi Rayasi strays offsides. Mo’unga kicks to the corner.
27.00: The Canes sack the maul legally, but are camped on their try-line.
28.00: Sam Whitelock knocks on, giving the visitors a reprieve.
29.00: The Crusaders have only made 12 tackles to 47 and have spent more than three minutes inside the Hurricanes’ 22, while the away side has only visited the Saders’ 22 for 38 seconds on two attempts.
32.00: Hurricanes are struggling; they cannot get any ball and are making silly handling mistakes inside their half.
33.00: Penalty to the hosts.
34.00: PENALTY! Mo’unga adds another easy three. 13-0
36.00: The Hurricanes are moving toward the opposition’s 10m; they have a penalty advantage, which Jordie Barrett kicks.
37.00: Whitelock is the guilty man. Beauden Barrett will kick to the corner after consulting his skipper.
38.00: Mounga cleans up Beauden Barrett’s cheeky grubber and clears down the field. Jordie Barrett tidies up, then races away down the sideline. He cannot find support, so takes the tackle.
39.00: The Canes recycle and are on the march.
40.00: TRY! Finally! Ngani Laumape steps inside the Crusaders covering defenders before scoring his 12th Super Rugby try of the season next the posts to put his team on the board. The try came from Jordie Barrett’s touchline break.
41.00: CONVERSION! Beauden Barrett adds the extras before halftime. 13-7
The halftime score was Crusaders 13 Hurricanes 7
41.00: PEEEEP! We are back underway in Christchurch.
41.00: TRY! Ben Lam finishes in the corner after Matt Proctor’s midfield break. Beauden Barrett’s sublime pass put the centre in a hole. The Canes recycled quickly, Perenara broke blind and popped an offload out-the-back door to Lam, who dotted down for his ninth try of the season. 13-12
42.00: MISS! Barrett pulls his kick, wide.
44.00: TRY! The Crusaders hit back immediately after a Mo’unga chip-kick wreaks havoc behind the yellow lines. James Marshall and Proctor botch the cleanup, Marshall allowing the ball to bounce underneath him. It proved costly as Mo’unga scores under the posts after taking Reece’s pass. 18-12
46.00: CONVERSION! Mo’unga adds the extras. 20-12
48.00: Both teams made some changes, some tactical, some for injury.
50.00: The Hurricanes’ handling has been dismal, especially for a team who are electric with the ball in hand.
51.00: TRY! Laumape scores using his chest to bump the ball past a defender. The referee calls for the TMO because he thinks the ball was lost forward, however, the replay shows the centre knocked the bouncing ball with his chest before collecting to score. WOW! 20-17
52.00: CONVERSION! Barrett makes it a one-point ball game. 20-19
56.00: The Crusaders are moving into a good attacking position inside the Canes’ half.
58.00: TRY! Reece has a double after some wonderful interplay between backs and forwards in the build-up. 25-19
60.00: CONVERSION! Mo’unga adds the extras. 27-19
62.00: TRY! The Crusaders mess up the restart, Coles barges forward but is stopped short by Drummond. The ball is recycled to Perenara, who throws an audacious dummy before darting over to score. 27-24
63.00: CONVERSION! Barrett, again, adds the two. 27-26
66.00: The Hurricanes have turned this game around, but can they get the important go-ahead try?
69.00: The Hurricanes have pulled this game back to a whisker, but they cannot find the killer blow.
71.00: A penalty is awarded to the hosts for an infringement at the breakdown. Mo’unga calls for the tee.
73.00: PENALTY! Mo’unga extends his side’s slender lead. 30-26
76.00: The Hurricanes have a good attacking chance; they have a centre-field scrum inside the Saders’ 22.
78.00: OH DEAR! Perenara cannot believe his luck as the Saders win a scrum for a knock on when it looked like a red player lost the ball forward.
80.00: The Crusaders take their time, win the scrum – after the hooter sounds – and Mo’unga clears into the stands to end the match.
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The final score is Crusaders 30 (13) Hurricanes 26 (7)
Tries – Reece (2), Mo’unga
Pen – Mo’unga (3)
Con – Mo’unga (3)
Tries – Laumape (2), Lam, Perenara
Con – B. Barrett (3)
Referee: Nic Berry
Assistant Ref 1: Jaco Peyper
Assistant Ref 2: Paul Williams
TMO: Ben Skeen
15 David Havili, 14 Reece, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Whetukamokamo Douglas, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody
Replacements: 16 Andrew Makalio, 17 George Bower, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 Braydon Ennor
15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Salesi Rayasi, 13 Matt Proctor, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Ben Lam, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 TJ Perenara, 8 Gareth Evans, 7 Ardie Savea, 6 Reed Prinsep, 5 Isaia Walker-Leawere, 4 James Blackwell, 3 Jeff To’omaga-Allen, 2 Dane Coles (captain), 1 Toby Smith
Replacements: 16 Asafo Aumua, 17 Xavier Numia, 18 Ben May, 19 Kane Le’aupepe, 20 Vaea Fifita, 21 Richard Judd, 22 James Marshall, 23 Peter Umaga-Jensen