Crusaders demolish Reds with second half burst
May 11, 2014
The Reds' Anthony Faingaa takes on Richie McCaw of the Crusaders © Getty Images
The Crusaders produced a dominant second-half display to overwhelm Queensland Reds 57-29 at Suncorp Stadium on Sunday, scoring four converted tries in 18 minutes as they racked up their highest ever points tally away from home.
Tries from Jamie-Jerry Taulagi, Dom Shipperley, Rod Davies and Rob Simmons ensured a losing bonus point for the Reds, but the Crusaders were too strong for the home side, running in six tries of their own via Nemani Nadolo Nasiganiyavi, Wyatt Crockett, Johnny McNicholl and Luke Whitelock.
Colin Slade kicked 27 points in an outstanding individual performance as the Crusaders broke records at Suncorp Stadium. The victory saw them become the first team from New Zealand to win in Brisbane since 2009 and they scored 50 points in Australia for the first time.
The Brumbies saw off the Sharks 16-9 in Canberra to ensure it was not a happy homecoming for Jake White.
White left the Brumbies in controversial circumstances in the Super Rugby pre-season to take up a role with the Sharks. Much of the talk in the week running up to the game at Canberra surrounded White's return but it was his old side who took the bragging rights.
Sam Carter's second-half try proved to be the difference between the two franchises with Christian Leali'ifano slotting 12 points for the Brumbies and Frans Steyn slotting nine for the visitors.
The Western Force kept up the pace on the Brumbies with a 23-16 win at the Cheetahs. In an uninspiring match tries from Jayden Hayward and Nick Cummins, along with 13 points from Sias Ebersohn secured the Force's seventh win of the campaign. The Cheetahs mustered their points through a try from No.8 Boom Prinsloo and 11 points from Johan Goosen.
The Bulls took the South African bragging rights with a 28-12 win over the Stormers. Akona Ndungane scored the Bulls' only try of the game while Handre Pollard put on a kicking masterclass with 20 points alongside one penalty from Jacques-Louis Potgieter. The Stormers crossed for two tries with Kurt Coleman and Juan de Jongh scoring.
Earlier in the day, the Lions missed a chance to snatch a shock win at the Highlanders when Elton Jantjies' last-gasp conversion hit the post leaving the hosts to claim a 23-22 win.
The Highlanders were in complete control at the break as they were 23-0 to the good, thanks to a double from Richard Buckman and a score from replacement Gareth Evans but the Lions threatened a famous comeback when tries from Francois de Klerk, Lionel Mapoe and Armand van der Merwe brought the game back to 23-17. When Courtnall Skosan scored in the 78th minute, it looked like they were going to claim the victory but Jantjies conversion agonisingly struck the post.
The Hurricanes kicked on from a narrow half-time lead to take a comfortable 25-15 win over the Melbourne Rebels.
The visiting Hurricanes led just 12-10 as the first half drew to a close, but a second half try from Conrad Smith and an impressive kicking performance from fly-half Beauden Barrett ensured victory for the New Zealand side.
Credit is due to the Rebels, who outscored their opponents two tries to one, thanks to scores from Bryce Hegarty and Tamati Ellison. But neither efforts were enough to prevent the Hurricanes from extending their unbeaten run to six matches.
The Chiefs dispatched the Blues in a free-scoring match that cements their position at the top of the New Zealand conference. The 32-20 victory saw tries for the Chiefs from Tim Nanai-Williams, Tom Marshall, and two from Ben Tameifuna. The Blues managed scores of their own through Lolagi Visinia and George Moala as they produced a late rally that tested the Chiefs defence.
But despite capitalising on a Nanai-Williams yellow card after 64 minutes with a try from Moala, the Blues conceded too many points too early and could not prevent the loss which leaves then bottom of the New Zealand conference.
The Hurricanes' Conrad Smith takes delight in scoring against the Rebels © Getty Images
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