Crusaders win would be best yet - Deans
Cape Town - Ex-Crusaders coach Robbie Deans believes a win for the
seven-time champions in Saturday's final would be their best ever triumph in
Deans, who coached the Christchurch-based side from 2000 to
2008 and guided them to five tournament victories, acknowledged that they face
a formidable task against the Lions in Johannesburg but said his former side
can pull off the win away from home.
"If the Crusaders do win this final at Ellis Park, they
will genuinely deserve the title," he told Stuff.
When asked if beating the Lions at altitude after a long
flight from New Zealand, Deans replied: "The current win is always the best,
but, yeah, absolutely.
"It's got unique challenges [playing in South Africa],
but these boys are well versed with that. And, it's finite. They know the end
"There's good belief in this group and enough
experience in these young blokes now.
"They know their lungs are going to burn, but I don't
think there's anything that they will be afraid of."
The former Wallabies boss, who currently coaches the
Panasonic Wild Knights in Japan, admitted that the Crusaders' semi-final win
against the Chiefs last weekend had similarities to his team's win over the
Brumbies in the 2000 final in Canberra.
In both those matches, the Crusaders had little ball
possession, but took their opportunities and kept their opponents at bay with impressive
"It's an indication of the bond that exist between the
players, and I guess it reflects the depth of belief as well," he said.