'Canes v Crusaders called off

2011-02-23 14:48

Christchurch - SANZAR CEO Greg Peters has announced that the Crusaders will withdraw from their Vodacom Super Rugby match against the Hurricanes in Wellington on Saturday, following the devastating earthquake that struck Christchurch on Tuesday.

According to the SA Rugby website, SANZAR rugby nations New Zealand, South Africa and Australia stand behind the Crusaders and their decision to withdraw from the round two match against the Hurricanes in Wellington on Saturday, February 26.

Crusaders Chief Executive Hamish Riach said the decision not to travel to Wellington this weekend, was reached following discussions between the Crusaders coaches, senior players and Crusaders’ Board.

“After all that has happened here in Christchurch and with so many lives affected by this event, we have decided it would not be appropriate to play a game of rugby against the Hurricanes on Saturday. Our thoughts are with our families, friends and wider Crusaders’ community and rugby is not a priority at the moment.

“All of the Crusaders players, team management, staff and board members have been directly affected by this terrible tragedy and it’s our desire to stay here and support our families and community at this time,” Riach said.

Peters said that the decision had the full backing of all three SANZAR countries.

“This decision had to be steered by the Crusaders Board, management and team. Our thoughts are very much with all of those affected by the earthquake,” Peters said.

NZRU Chief Executive Steve Tew said that New Zealand rugby stood firmly behind the Crusaders and the Canterbury rugby region.

“New Zealand is dealing with an enormous human tragedy and our sympathies and thoughts are very much with the people of Christchurch at this time. We will continue to work to see how we can best support our friends and colleagues in the Crusaders and the Canterbury community over the coming weeks and months,” Tew said.

Hurricanes chairperson Paul Collins said: “We fully support the Crusaders’ decision not to play this fixture and we wish to extend our sympathies to everyone who has been affected by this tragedy. Our focus now will be on finding ways in which the Hurricanes franchise can support the people of Christchurch through this terrible time.

"Obviously there are a number of logistical issues we have to work through with our commercial partners, members and supporters who were planning to come to the game on Saturday and we will be working hard to resolve these as soon as possible.”

Peters said that SANZAR executive committee involving all three countries had agreed to declare the Hurricanes v Crusaders match a draw and the competition points would be shared evenly between the two franchises (two points each), as consistent with similar situations in other international tournaments. Both franchises had been consulted and were in agreement with this decision.


  • Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-23 15:08

    What an honourable thing to do for both teams. My prayers go out to all the players, their families and all the people of New Zealand affected by this tragedy.

      BlackSwan - 2011-02-23 15:36

      Well said - for once I fully agree with you

      Shistirrer - 2011-02-23 15:57

      Spot on, Pappa Smurf, I could not agree more. PS: Like Black Swan, I never thought I'd EVER agree with you on anything - pity it had to take a tragedy of this scale to make it happen :-(

      Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-23 16:03

      At last you guys and SAFFA-CAT have seen the light.

      jakes001 - 2011-02-23 16:13

      Good comment Smurf, I am proud of you this time.

      Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-23 16:56

      I wish my papa would have told me that he was proud of me........even only once.

  • Grant - 2011-02-23 15:09

    Not sure I agree with this. If anybody from the squad or coaching staff (and their families) have been effected, then yes, I agree with the decision. If they are not playing just because rugby shouldnt be a priority, then whats the point? Will it be a priority again NEXT week? Next MONTH? The Aus cricket team have been out there performing whilst all of their tragedies were occurring. The world is not supposed to stand still. A minute's silence should be the gesture offered.

      Pete - 2011-02-23 15:21

      Here's the sentence: “All of the Crusaders players, team management, staff and board members have been directly affected by this terrible tragedy..."

      Koro - 2011-02-23 15:28

      Who really cares if you agree with it or not?! The point is that the decision should be left to the players and management involved. 75+ people are dead, 300+ missing and the city is in ruins! Of course they are affected! You mention the aussie cricket team, thats a irrelevant comparison. The All Blacks probably wouldnt have postponed a game cos they are from all over the country. This Crusaders team represents the region and is based in the city where this event happened. SHESSH!

      george.traut - 2011-02-23 15:32

      I understand what you are saying, and i agree to a certain point. But in a different article, it said that someone on the board of directors of the crusaders lost his life. So I agree with everyone that it would have been innapropriate to play this game. At the moment, there are more important things than rugby.

      Torro Azur - 2011-02-23 20:19

      Sorry to say Grant but this is a shallow and inhumane comment. The sensitivity speaks of characteristics only found with a certifiable sociopath or a very childish and immature outlook on life. Sport is always submissive to human tragedy. The Ossiez choice to continue with their cricket endeavours confirms what is already known. This was not only a honourable decision but also the only one to make. Our prayers are with all the people of NZ, this is a national tragedy!

  • SAFFA-CAT - 2011-02-23 15:18

    I think this is an incredibly relevant decision. NOTHING is to be more respected than remembering those who have suffered tragedy....and rugby sorry to say (regardless of how fanatical most of us are at times...) means ZERO at a time like this. Just my opinion & for once Papa Smurf, I agree with thee.

  • MACKAROONEY - 2011-02-23 16:05

    its ok by me....

  • Bob - 2011-02-23 16:08

    How not playing a game of anything helps the situation is beyond me. Everytime someone suffers a tragedy we all stay home and the world stops? Show due concern by all means, raise money sure, but life goes on in any profession and these guys are all professionals. At the end of the tournament we'll hear how the kiwis sacrificed Super Rugby for the national good?

      Blue Jake - 2011-02-23 16:21

      Your an idiot, idiot.

      kosie - 2011-02-23 16:29

      my cousin lives in christchurch and he says the news are making it worse than really is, and the kiwi's are used to nothing, if it happened in SA we would have forgotten about it within two weeks, but they will now milk this tragedy and when they lose the world cup they will blame it on earthquakes.

      Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-23 17:33

      Bob, jy is kak lelik.

      watalife - 2011-02-23 18:31

      @BobuKnob get a life monkey....@ Kosiedoosie like you milked the cow boetie

      JDemons - 2011-02-23 22:40

      @kosie- Jeez man it's only been 3 days, if you think 75 dead and 300 missing is nothing then you must live somewhere near hell. @Bob - I thought SA was sunny and warm, how can one be so cold?

      Andrew - 2011-02-24 05:19

      Bob and Kosie, you are both hopeless excuses for human beings, I'm an expat living in New Zealand and believe me the whole country feels the pain, the people in New Zealand actually cares what happens to their fellow man, something you might have forgotten. If it was not that serious (accroding to Kosie's cousin), why do we have a state of national emergency, with 75 people dead, hunddres still missing, at least $16 billion in damages, and you are worried about what they might say at the end of the series? I applaud the decision.

      Toby - 2011-02-24 11:57

      Never thought I would agree with Papa Smurf on anything. Bob you are out of order.

  • alachenicht - 2011-02-23 16:24

    Damn, there goes my superbru prediction... Only joking, good decision. Thoughts are with you!

      Blue Jake - 2011-02-23 16:57

      I'm going to make my picks now. He he.

  • Glenfillan - 2011-02-23 16:33

    @Bob.What is wrong with You?. We do not know any of the Crusaders players or staff personnaly. So we don,t know if any of them lost family or Friends in this tragedy. Are they not allowed family responsibility leave? Juan Smith was out if the game for weeks after his Fathers death last year.Was that also beyond you.Sies

  • Kobus - 2011-02-23 17:01

    @ Bob and kosie: You really think if such a disaster occurred in SA we would forget about in two weeks?? And you picture the Kiwis as not used to anything?? I'd much rather turn it around and state that several SA's I know are most definitely not used to anything! We are the first to run around like headless chickens trying to find something to blame our losses on! You want to know why we hate Kiwis and Aussies? Because that's the only reaction we have when they keep beating us!

  • Claude - 2011-02-23 17:56

    Come on Guys you are not on the ground in New Zealand - accept what they think is best for them however, I would think a rearrangement of buys would have been in the games and the teams best interests.

  • Francois - 2011-02-23 18:14

    They could otherwise have played the game and then donated all proceeds and match fees towards supporting those affected by the disaster. SANZAR could then also donated gains from TV rights and advertising towards the cause.

  • StBad - 2011-02-23 22:54

    Very sad, thoughts go out to the players and management... is it unsympathetic to ask how the points for the match will be handled (do they forfeight?)

      AJ - 2011-02-24 07:15

      Shared - 2 each.

  • Bons - 2011-02-24 07:31

    What happens to Nonus suspension?

      Viv - 2011-02-24 07:56

      Who cares Bons!! I really am so horrified that people are worried about their scores or suspensions. PEOPLE ARE DEAD. What kind of vile creatures roam this God forsaken planet that we care more about points and suspensions than the lives of people. I have closed friends who have lost their loved ones to this terrible disaster and I find each and every one of you who make heartless comments sick and disgusting. The New Zealanders - who are actually living through this hell - have decided to forfeit the match and that this their decision to make. Us outsiders who are not in NZ and dont have any bloody say to be quite honest need to keep our big mouths shut. It makes me sick to see that people are more concerned with stupid games than what is actually happening in this world. What a sad, sad species we are.

  • Bob - 2011-02-24 18:52

    The emotion expressed is understandable - the inability to debate in a civil manner speaks volumes for those who use insult as their only weapon. Did any of you call for postponements of sporting fixtures after the Boibatong or Bhisho massacres, which were human driven? Probably not and certainly none of the ex-pats.

      Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-24 19:22

      Look at yourself you old fart. I recon you were the only one on these forums alive at the time of Boipatong and Bisho.

  • Bob - 2011-02-24 21:59

    And that makes you?? a lost "youth" with little, or no culture?? Funny that is a term of endearment in our family - but then we have one.

      Pappa Smurf - 2011-02-25 10:50

      No prick, it means that half of us were either small kids or weren't even born when your named tragedies occurd. That's probably why we didn't call for postponements.

      maycenz - 2011-02-25 11:36

      Hey Bob, Im a kiwi and I think your comments explain a lot about why we have seen no support sent by south africa aye? Why also are you comparing political violence to a natural disaster that there are estimating currently will cost up $12 billion US to repair and that is directly impacting over 300000 people? Im not understanding your logic?

  • Orca - 2011-02-26 09:24

    Realise that the situation in Christchurch is extremely serious and the distress in that city is immense. The decision taken is by far the most reasonable under the circumstances. It may not make sense to fanatics such as our friend Bob, but then good reason seldom does to them.

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