The football doesn't stop!

The 2014 SWC might be over, but the PSL and English Premiership are around the corner! Have your say on our Forum!

LIVE

    Crusaders add to Div's despair

    2011-07-05 11:49
    Sydney - In a weekend of memorable rugby moments, one of the best came in the final minute of an exceptional Crusaders win over the Stormers.

    The television cameras panned to Springboks coach Peter de Villiers in the crowd, and he looked devastated. He was resting his head on his right hand and glumly staring into space. The reason for his discomfort was simple. He had just witnessed his best South African provincial team on their home turf clinically disposed of by the core of the All Blacks Test line-up.

    According to Rugby Heaven columnist Greg Growden, his despair also would have something to do with what occurred in the first half. De Villiers is renowned for making baffling comments, and one of his most ridiculous occurred some weeks ago when he targeted Sonny Bill Williams. He described Williams's keenness to offload in the tackle as "nonsense" and a bad example for young players.

    Cue ahead to the 34th minute, and Williams was tackled by the Stormers No 8 Nick Koster and centre Jaque Fourie. But before crashing into the turf Williams succeeded in offloading the pass to his centre partner, Robbie Fruean, who went on to score to give the Crusaders a 20-point lead. End of semi-final.

    As Fruean grounded the ball, the South African TV commentator remarked: "Brilliant piece of rugby. You can say what you like about offloads - dangerous or not - that's the kind of rugby that stops kids from going to the movies."

    How true.

    You also knew this wouldn't be the last time in this Rugby World Cup season that Sonny Bill would make De Villiers look silly.

    While De Villiers will probably try to turn this negative into something positive by saying it will give the South African contingent an extra week of rest before the Tri-Nations begins, Australia and New Zealand can prime themselves for a great Super Rugby final.

    It doesn't get any better than this. In one corner are the Reds, who have revitalised Australian rugby through their willingness to be different, as well as having the courage to continually stretch the barriers.

    They have shown the way and reminded all that speed is imperative, that you don't have to be dour to be victors and it is so much better if you take a risk.

    In the other corner are the Crusaders, who continually astound. In particular, how they overcame all the nightmares of a quick trip to South Africa and got it together perfectly against the Stormers.

    Both finalists are also united in having to overcome disaster in recent times. The physical and psychological effects of the Christchurch earthquake will take decades to overcome and it has forced the Crusaders to become rugby gypsies, playing here, there and everywhere. Their travel itinerary has been a nightmare, but they have never complained. The players say with pride they represent a community that has been under so much stress and, in such trying times, must remain stoic. In that traditional, hard, roll-your-sleeves-up New Zealand South Island manner, they have. They deserve endless praise.

    The Reds have also overcome pain. It must be remembered that not that long ago Suncorp Stadium was under water, hit by the massive floods that swept through Brisbane.

    During that time the Reds were sighted filling sandbags around town and helping out. The bond between the Reds and the Brisbane community became even stronger.

    A Reds v Crusaders final involves the two best teams in the competition who play the most invigorating, compelling form of football. A classic final is in the offing.

    Read News24’s Comments Policy

    24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

    Comment on this story
    141 comments
    Add your comment
    Comment 0 characters remaining
    Live Video Streaming
    • SS3
      Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @04:00
    • SS4
      Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @05:00
    • SS5
      Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @05:59
    • SS7
      Thu, 31 Jul 2014 @06:00
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk

    Fixtures

    02 August 2014
    • Waratahs v Crusaders, Sydney 11:40

    Results

    26 July 2014
    19 July 2014
    12 July 2014
    11 July 2014
    06 July 2014
    05 July 2014
    04 July 2014
    28 June 2014
    27 June 2014
    31 May 2014
    30 May 2014
    24 May 2014
    23 May 2014
    18 May 2014
    17 May 2014
    16 May 2014
    11 May 2014
    10 May 2014
    09 May 2014
    03 May 2014
    02 May 2014
    26 April 2014
    25 April 2014
    19 April 2014
    18 April 2014
    12 April 2014
    11 April 2014
    05 April 2014
    04 April 2014
    29 March 2014
    28 March 2014
    22 March 2014
    21 March 2014
    15 March 2014
    14 March 2014
    08 March 2014
    07 March 2014
    01 March 2014
    28 February 2014
    23 February 2014
    22 February 2014
    21 February 2014
    15 February 2014

    Logs

    Rank Team P W Pts

    Opinion Poll

    The 2014 Vodacom Super Rugby final will be contested between the Waratahs and Crusaders. Who is your money on?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

    TAKE THE QUIZ
    There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.