Crusaders coach eyes unique piece of history

    2017-08-05 08:55

    Lloyd Burnard - Johannesburg

    Johannesburg - The build-up to Saturday's simply massive Super Rugby final between the Lions and the Crusaders has centred around Johan Ackermann's farewell, the fact that 62 000 people will pack into Ellis Park and the appointment of South African Jaco Peyper as the referee. 

    It is one of the most hyped-up Super Rugby finals in recent years, and if the Lions win they will ensure that the trophy comes back to South Africa for the first time since 2010. 

    The Crusaders, the most successful team in the history of the competition, have not won the title since 2008. 

    But there is another interesting little sideshow to what is an already blockbuster main event. 

    If the Crusaders win on Saturday, coach Scott Robertson will become the first man to win Super Rugby as both a player and a coach. 

    A relative rookie to the coaching world, Robertson replaced Todd Blackadder at the start of the season. 

    Blackadder had not won a Super Rugby title in any of his eight years at the franchise and now Robertson is on the verge of doing just that in his first season. 

    During his eight years as a loose forward at the Crusaders from 1996-2003, Robertson won four Super Rugby titles and was very much a part of the golden generation in Canterbury. 

    On Thursday at a press conference at Montecasino in Johannesburg, the 42-year-old seemed unaware of the fact that he was on the verge of achieving something that nobody else has. 

    "I haven’t looked at it that way, to be fair," the playful Robertson, known as 'Razor', said.

    "It would be quite emotional if the boys pulled it off.

    "To do it as a player and understand how much it meant to me and the team … we’ve had so many messages of support from the old crew.

    "To do it as a coach and a player would be amazing."

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    15 Andries Coetzee, 14 Ruan Combrinck, 13 Lionel Mapoe, 12 Harold Vorster, 11 Courtnall Skosan, 10 Elton Jantjies, 9 Ross Cronje, 8 Ruan Ackermann, 7 Kwagga Smith, 6 Jaco Kriel (captain), 5 Franco Mostert, 4 Andries Ferreira, 3 Ruan Dreyer, 2 Malcolm Marx, 1 Jacques van Rooyen

    Substitutes: 16 Akker van der Merwe, 17 Corne Fourie, 18 Johannes Jonker, 19 Lourens Erasmus, 20 Cyle Brink, 21 Faf de Klerk, 22 Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 23 Sylvian Mahuza


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    Substitutes: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Mike Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 George Bridge

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