Christchurch - The Crusaders snatched a last-gasp 14-13 win over the Stormers on Saturday to get their faltering Super Rugby season back on
track.As it happened: Crusaders v Stormers
Flyhalf Tom Taylor was the hero for the seven-time
champions, landing a penalty with six minutes to go that sealed the
victory after debutant Kieron Fonotia's try put the Crusaders within
Taylor also produced a try-saving tackle to mow
down the Stormers' Nizaam Carr with a minute on the clock as the match
reached a nail-biting finale.
The Crusaders were fortunate to
score their first win of the season against a Stormers' outfit that
produced a stunning defensive effort to defuse the home side's All
Black-studded backline for much of the match.
They looked set to
lose their first ever home match to a South African side after
dominating possession and territory but repeatedly bouncing off a solid
wall of Stormers' defence.
Springbok flank Schalk Burger said he
felt the Stormers had done enough to claim victory when Damian de
Allende scored a converted try early in the second half to put them up
Burger, who had an outstanding game, pounced on a sloppy
Willi Heinz kick and offloaded to Jean de Villiers, whose chip kick was
scooped up by de Allende on the run.
"We did enough to get a victory but unfortunately we were one point light tonight. Obviously they were desperate," he said.
Crusaders remained persistent and were finally rewarded with a try in
the 68th minute when Fonotia bustled over the line, dragging two
defenders with him.
But the Stormers retained a narrow 13-11 lead when Taylor's conversion attempt drifted wide.
made no mistake when Michael Rhodes conceded an offside penalty,
nailing the kick to give the Crusaders the narrowest of wins.
said the Stormers, who enjoyed a one-point win against the Hurricanes last week, would take confidence from the fact that they had
come so close to upsetting the vaunted Crusaders.
"It was a
massive effort not to get a victory and we'll have to bounce back from
that and bring the same intensity against the Chiefs next week," he
Crusaders - Try: Kieron Fonotia; Penalties: Tom Taylor (3)
Stormers - Try: Damian de Allende; Conversion: Demetri Catrakilis; Penalties: Catrakilis (2) Teams:Crusaders
15 Colin Slade, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Reynold Lee-Lo, 12 Ryan Crotty,
11 Israel Dagg, 10 Tom Taylor
, 9 Willi Heinz, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Matt
Todd, 6 Luke Whitelock, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Owen
Franks, 2 Corey Flynn, 1 Wyatt Crockett
Substitutes: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Tim Perry, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Dominic Bird,
20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Andy Ellis, 22 Tyler Bleyendaal, 23 Kieron FonotiaStormers
Jaco Taute, 14 Kobus van Wyk, 13 Jean de Villiers (captain), 12 Damian
de Allende, 11 Gio Aplon, 10 Demetri Catrakilis
, 9 Nic Groom,
8 Duane Vermeulen
, 7 Schalk Burger, 6 Deon Fourie, 5 De Kock Steenkamp, 4
, 3 Frans Malherbe, 2 Scarra
Ntubeni, 1 Steven Kitshoff
Substitutes: 16 Tiaan Liebenberg
Oliver Kebble, 18 Pat Cilliers, 19 Ruan Botha, 20 Nizaam Carr, 21 Louis
Schreuder, 22 Peter Grant
, 23 Sailosi Tagicakibau