Wilson: Crusaders to win S15

    2014-07-22 14:09
    Cape Town - Former All Black and Highlanders wing Jeff Wilson has predicted that the Crusaders will win this year's Super Rugby competition.

    Wilson, in a column on the Sydney Morning Herald's website, said he expects a Waratahs-Crusaders final in Sydney on August 2.

    Wilson made little mention in his piece of the Sharks and Brumbies' hopes of claiming upset away victories in Saturday's semi-finals.

    He acknowledged that the top-of-the-table Waratahs deserved to be the bookies' favourites to win the competition.

    However, he believes the "All Blacks factor" will prove pivotal in the showpiece match.

    "The Waratahs may be the bookmakers' and logical man's favourite but they're not mine," Wilson wrote.

    "I believe the Crusaders will win this competition - even if they have to travel to Sydney and beat the 'Tahs on their home turf to achieve it. And in saying that, I mean no disrespect to the Waratahs at all. Quite the opposite, in fact.

    "In previous years, Kiwi fans have tended to deride the Waratahs as 'March premiers'. They always start a season well and threaten but invariably seem to fall over at the business end when the most is on the line. I sense a tougher beast this time around.

    "There are less weaknesses than the past. They can still have the odd hiccup at lineout time but the key reason they have improved this season is they finally have the right people in the right places.

    "But on the presumption they were to meet the Crusaders in the final - and that's not a presumption any sane man should be making this far out - they would run into the same psychological challenge many of those players face when they don a green and gold jersey and take on the All Blacks. That is knowing you are facing a remorseless and tight bunch of players who believe in each other, their jersey and their ability to prevail no matter what.

    "NSW know this Crusaders side is full of All Blacks. In fact, only about one of them isn't. And he's a winger (Nemani Nadolo), who plays for Fiji and isn't a half bad player in his own right!

    "I look at the Crusaders and see an All Blacks mentality, which is why they are my favourites."

    Leading South African bookmakers, BetFlash, have made the Waratahs 23/20 favourites to win the title, followed by the Crusaders (31/20), with the Sharks (7/1) and Brumbies (15/2) as rank outsiders.

    In Saturday's first semi-final in Christchurch, the Crusaders host the Sharks (09:35 SA time), while the Waratahs duel with the Brumbies in Sydney (11:40).

    CLICK HERE to read Jeff Wilson's full column on the Sydney Morning Herald website.

    Read News24’s Comments Policy 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
    Comments have been closed for this article.
    Live Video Streaming
    • Blitz
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
    • SS1
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
    • SS2
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
    • SS3
      Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
    Video Highlights
    Sport Talk
    Most Read
    /World Cup


    26 February 2016
    • Blues v Highlanders, Eden Park 08:35
    • Brumbies v Hurricanes, GIO Stadium 10:40
    • Cheetahs v Argentina Super Rugby, Free State Stadium 19:00
    27 February 2016
    • TBC v Lions, Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium 06:15
    • Crusaders v Chiefs, AMI Stadium 08:35
    • Waratahs v Reds, Allianz Stadium 10:40
    • Force v Rebels, nib Stadium 12:50
    • Kings v Sharks, Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium 15:00
    • Stormers v Bulls, Cape Town 17:05
    04 March 2016
    • Crusaders v Blues, AMI Stadium 08:35
    • Brumbies v Waratahs, GIO Stadium 10:40


    04 July 2015
    27 June 2015
    20 June 2015
    13 June 2015
    12 June 2015
    06 June 2015
    05 June 2015
    30 May 2015
    29 May 2015
    23 May 2015
    22 May 2015
    16 May 2015
    15 May 2015
    09 May 2015
    08 May 2015
    02 May 2015
    01 May 2015
    26 April 2015
    25 April 2015
    24 April 2015
    18 April 2015
    17 April 2015
    11 April 2015
    10 April 2015
    04 April 2015
    03 April 2015
    28 March 2015
    27 March 2015
    22 March 2015
    21 March 2015
    20 March 2015
    14 March 2015
    13 March 2015
    07 March 2015
    06 March 2015
    28 February 2015
    27 February 2015
    21 February 2015
    20 February 2015
    15 February 2015
    14 February 2015
    13 February 2015


    “Craig Joubert deserves plaudits for making a gutsy call against the home side in the Super Rugby semis, writes Herman Mostert.”

    Opinion Poll

    Super Rugby is a thing of the past. Next up: The Rugby Championship. Who will emerge victorious this season?

    Monday Quiz Madness!

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