Crusaders rout hapless Sunwolves

Fri, 14 Apr 2017 06:45

SUPER RUGBY REPORT: The Crusaders put eight tries past the hapless Sunwolves to beat the men from Japan 50-3 in a wet Christchurch on Good Friday.

The Crusaders were simply TOO GOOD for the visitors, who found it tough to get into the game in testing conditions.

However, it was more the efficiency of the Crusaders and the professional application of the laws by the referee, rather than the after-effects of cyclone Cook that caused the downfall of the Sunwolves.

The Crusaders completely dominated possession and territory, as they shut down a team that had relied on the leniency of match officials all season to keep them in games.

This time it went horribly wrong.

Manasa Mataele bagged a hat-trick of tries to help ensure the Crusaders reclaim first place on the global table from the Stormers - who held it on points differential for the past week.

The overwhelming scoreline also kept the Crusaders unbeaten after seven matches.

The hapless Sunwolves have only tasted victory once this year to go with their sole win in their maiden season last year.

In their first ever match in New Zealand, the Sunwolves were competitive for the first 20 minutes and managed to snuff out a Crusaders line-out drive.

But when Crusaders right wing Seta Tamanivalu was yellow-carded in the 25th minute for a dangerous tackle, his nephew Mataele sprang into action on the left wing and it was all Crusaders from there.

Mataele ran in three quick tries as the Crusaders jumped from 14-3 ahead to lead 29-3 at half-time.

They piled on a further three tries in the second half before losing their finishing edge when the lop-sided affair was used to blood junior members of their squad for the final quarter.

Despite the commanding win, Crusaders captain Sam Whitelock felt his side had lost a little accuracy after having a bye last week.

"We were a little bit rusty but the beauty is we got the win, which is the main thing, and got maximum points as well," he said.

"We were good in parts but we didn't really finish that well. We had a couple of guys out there for their first run so they'll be bursting with that feeling and that excitement."

It was a sharp return to earth for the Japanese who celebrated their first win of the season last week when they came from behind to beat the Bulls 21-20.

They were monstered by a Crusaders pack bolstered by the return of All Black skipper Kieran Read who scored the first try of the match when the Crusaders used their superior power to drive him over the line.

Hooker Ben Funnell scored the second try, also from a forward drive, before Mataele brought the pace and dexterity of the Crusaders backline into action.

He scored two tries down the left side and a third on the right as the match statistics highlighted a clear difference in class.

The Crusaders made 550 metres to 154, while the Sunwolves were forced to make 127 tackles to 59.

Pete Samu, George Bridge and Whetu Douglas scored further tries for the Crusaders in the first 20 minutes of the second half to bring up their 50 points.

Life gets tougher for the Crusaders next week when they host the Stormers, while the Sunwolves head to Invercargill to play the Highlanders.

Man of the match: You can look at a host - or almost all - of the Crusaders players. Men like David Havili, Manasa Mataele, Kieran Read (in his first game back from wrist surgery), Sam Whitelock, Luke Romano and Ben Funnell were all very impressive. However, our award goes to Australian referee Nic Berry - the first match official this season to penalise the Sunwolves for their persistent illegal tactics - collapsing scrums, props standing on their knees, the hooker advancing his foot illegally before the ball is in, skew throws at the line-outs, offside, hands in at every ruck, obstructive running, etc.

The scorers:

For the Crusaders:
Tries:
 Reid, Funnell, Mataele 3, Samu, Bridge, Douglas
Cons: Mo'unga 3, McKenzie 2

For the Sunwolves:
Pen:
 Tamura

Yellow card: Seta Tamanivalu (Crusaders, 25 - foul play, taking out a player in the air)

Teams:

Crusaders: 15 David Havili, 14 Seta Tamanivalu, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Tim Bateman, 11 Manasa Mataele, 10 Richie Mo'unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Pete Samu, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Luke Romano, 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Andrew Makalio, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Oliver Jager, 19 Quinten Strange, 20 Whetu Douglas, 21 Leon Fukofuka, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 George Bridge.

Sunwolves: 15 Kotaro Matsushima, 14 Takaaki Nakazuru, 13 Timothy Lafaele, 12 Derek Carpenter, 11 Teruya Goto, 10 Yu Tamura, 9 Fumiaki Tanaka, 8 Rahboni Warren-Vosayaco, 7 Shunsuke Nunomaki, 6 Edward Quirk, 5 Sam Wykes, 4 Liaki Moli, 3 Takuma Asahara, 2 Takeshi Kizu, 1 Keita Inagaki.
Replacements: 16 Yusuke Niwai, 17 Koki Yamamoto, 18 Heiichiro Ito, 19 Shinya Makabe, 20 Yuhimaru Mimura, 21 Yuki Yatomi, 22 William Tupou, 23 Jamie-Jerry Taulagi.

Referee: Nic Berry (Australia)
Assistant referees: Will Houston (Australia), Cam Stone (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Cardiff Blues v Zebre 18h05 Cardiff
Edinburgh v Dragons 18h35 Myreside
Leinster v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 RDS Arena
Newcastle Falcons v Worcester Warriors 19h00 Kingston Park
Sat, 29 April 2017
Chiefs v Sunwolves 07h35 Hamilton
Reds v Waratahs 09h45 Suncorp Stadium
Force v Lions 11h55 Perth
Ospreys v Ulster 14h00 Liberty Stadium
Bath v Gloucester 14h00 Recreation Ground
Exeter Chiefs v Northampton Saints 14h00 Sandy Park
Saracens v Bristol 14h00 Allianz Park
Harlequins v Wasps 14h00 Twickenham Stoop
Leicester Tigers v Sale Sharks 14h00 Welford Road
Cheetahs v Crusaders 15h15 Bloemfontein
Treviso v Munster 17h05 Stadio Monigo
Kings v Rebels 17h30 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Connacht v Scarlets 18h35 Sportsground
Jaguares v Blues 19h40 Buenos Aires
Sun, 30 April 2017
Brumbies v Blues 06h05 Canberra
Fri, 05 May 2017
Hurricanes v Stormers 07h35 Westpac Stadium
RESULT SCORE
Fri, 28 April 2017
Highlanders v Stormers 57 | 14
Sun, 23 April 2017
Clermont Auvergne v Leinster 27 | 22
Sat, 22 April 2017
Sharks v Rebels 9 | 9
Bulls v Cheetahs 20 | 14
Munster v Saracens 10 | 26
Force v Chiefs 7 | 16
Crusaders v Stormers 57 | 24
Highlanders v Sunwolves 40 | 15
Fri, 21 April 2017
Lions v Jaguares 24 | 21
Waratahs v Kings 24 | 26
Hurricanes v Brumbies 56 | 21
Mon, 17 April 2017
UP-Tuks v Maties 28 | 21
Sun, 16 April 2017
Northampton Saints v Saracens 25 | 27
Bristol v Wasps 21 | 36
Sat, 15 April 2017
Connacht v Leinster 24 | 37
SUPER RUGBY
MORE LOGS
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 8 3 0 5 17
Reds 8 2 0 6 10
Force 7 2 0 5 9
Waratahs 8 2 0 6 9
Rebels 7 1 1 5 7
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 8 8 0 0 36
Hurricanes 8 7 0 1 33
Chiefs 8 7 0 1 33
Highlanders 9 6 0 3 28
Blues 8 3 0 5 17
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 9 6 0 3 26
Bulls 8 3 0 5 14
Cheetahs 8 2 0 6 10
Sunwolves 8 1 0 7 5
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 8 7 0 1 32
Sharks 8 5 1 2 24
Jaguares 8 4 0 4 20
Kings 8 2 0 6 10