The best of both Super Rugby sides from each country has finally met for another round of battles tonight over at Orangetheory Stadium in Christchurch between Crusaders & Brumbies. The away side may have opened the scoreboard with a penalty goal but the Crusaders dominated the first half with three tries ahead of the break, 19-3.
Now the Brumbies have made up some lost time by striking back at the Saders a few times later in the 2nd half, but closing the gap to the leaders proved to be a tall order as the Crusaders extended their winning margin at the same time before they got away with another win, 35-17.
It’s not been the night the Brumbies wanted over in Christchurch as their unbeaten start of 2023 has now came to an end at the hands of the defending SR champions. They fired off slowly in the first half, particularly with their attack despite the early headstart via the three-point penalty goal. Although they did improve in some way with two tries later on, but then they were lagging behind them for the majority before it was too late. As said, poor starts is one thing they need to rebound but then a mix of ill discipline & lost penalties/turnovers prevented them from matching the Saders’ high-flying attack & execution play with the loss. They will now return home in Canberra with the Waratahs next up for Round 6 on Saturday night.
Meanwhile, it’s great to see the Crusaders enjoy winning at home again after fending off v the 2nd best SR side of the Blues last week in Auckland. Not only they held off well defensively that left the Brumbies frustrated, but the Saders got away with a few tries on the board courtesy of their patient attacking play before their conversions were explosive to see in front of their home crowd. Too easy to say really as they crossed the finish line comfortably without a fight against the best Australian SR side (Brumbies). Yes, we’ve heard the news about Head Coach Scott Robertson stepping up into International level after this year with the All Blacks in place of Ian Foster. However, there’s still unfinished business in their title defense this season, as they’ve got another Australian side to face ahead of their next trip in Brisbane next Friday night v Queensland Reds.