Crusaders blow away Lions in show of gulf in class
Cape Town - The Crusaders put in yet another championship quality performance in thrashing the Lions in their Super Rugby clash in Christchurch on Friday
As it happened: Crusaders v Lions
The Crusaders won 36-10 after leading 17-3 at half-time.
The clash was a repeat of the tournament's last two season's finalists - and once again there was only one winner.
The Crusaders scored five tries through centre Braydon Ennor, and braces by both wings Sevu Reece and George Bridge. Flyhalf Richie Mo’unga added four conversions and a penalty.
The Lions, who suffered a late blow with the withdrawal of inspirational skipper Warren Whiteley, once again struggled without their rested star hooker, Malcolm Marx.
The Lions troubled the scorers with an intercept try by fullback Ruan Combrinck and a conversion and penalty by Elton Jantjies.
The Crusaders picked up a full-house of five points for their victory and extended their lead atop both the New Zealand Conference and Overall log.
The Lions left empty-handed, but remained second and fifth in the South African Conference and Overall standings, respectively.
In next weekend's Round 12 action, the Crusaders welcome the Sharks to Christchurch (Friday, May 3 at 09:35 SA time), while the Lions have a bye.
Crusaders 36 (17)
Tries: Braydon Ennor, Sevu Reece (2), George Bridge (2)
Conversions: Richie Mo'unga (4)
Lions 10 (3)
Try: Ruan Combrinck
Conversion: Elton Jantjies
15 David Havili, 14 Sevu Reece, 13 Braydon Ennor, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Billy Harmon, 6 Whetukamokamo Douglas, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Quinten Strange, 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody
Substitutes: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Harry Allan, 18 Oliver Jager, 19 Michael Dunshea, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Eretara Enarai, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 Ngane Punivai
15 Ruan Combrinck, 14 Sylvian Mahuza, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Elton Jantjies, 11 Aphiwe Dyantyi, 10 Shaun Reynolds, 9 Nic Groom, 8 Kwagga Smith (captain), 7 Cyle Brink, 6 Marnus Schoeman, 5 Marvin Orie, 4 Stephan Lewies, 3 Carlu Sadie, 2 Robbie Coetzee, 1 Sti Sithole
Substitutes: 16 Jan-Henning Campher, 17 Nathan Mcbeth, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Wilhelm van der Sluys, 20 Hacjivah Dayimani, 21 Ross Cronje, 22 Franco Naude, 23 Tyrone Green