Lions' long history of Crusaders disappointments
Cape Town - A look through the Super Rugby history books suggests the Lions will come unstuck against the Crusaders in Saturday's Super Rugby final in Christchurch.
Kick-off is at 09:35 SA time.
And if that comes across as overly negative, there is one glaring fact that puts things into perspective.
The Lions as they are currently known, as well as any other name variations over the years, have never won in Christchurch.
The 2001 Cats team (a combination between the Lions and Cheetahs) did beat the Crusaders 32-21 away from home, but that match was played at Trafalgar Park in Nelson.
Since 2007 when the Cats dissolved, the Lions and Crusaders have met on 11 occasions with 8 of those played at Ellis Park and 3 in Christchurch.
The Lions lost all 3 of those away matches while they won just 2 from the 8 at home over that time.
It means that the Lions, since 2007, have won 2 and lost 9 of their last 11 matches against the Crusaders.
In going back to the birth of Super 12 in 1996, the numbers are even more scary.
If we accept that Transvaal, the Cats and the Golden Lions are all variations of what is currently the Lions franchise, then there have been a total of 22 clashes against the Crusaders since 1996.
The Lions have won just 5 of those matches, losing 17 while their only win away from home came in 2001.
That gives them an overall win percentage of 22.7%.
Lions record v Crusaders (home team first):
2018: Lions 8-14 Crusaders
2017: Lions 17-25 Crusaders (Final)
2016: Lions 42-25 Crusaders (QF)
2016: Lions 37-43 Crusaders
2015: Crusaders 34-6 Lions
2014: Lions 7-28 Crusaders
2013: No fixture
2012: Lions 13-23 Crusaders
2011: No fixture
2010: Crusaders 46-19 Lions
2009: Lions 20-32 Crusaders
2008: Crusaders 31-6 Lions
2007: Lions 9-3 Crusaders
2006: Crusaders 43-15 Cats
2005: Crusaders 40-36 Cats
2004: Cats 37-39 Crusaders
2003: Crusaders 65-34 Cats
2002: Cats 30-37 Crusaders
2001: Crusaders 31-32 Cats
2000: Cats 54-31 Crusaders
1999: Crusaders 58-38 Cats
1998: Cats 25-34 Crusaders
1997: Crusaders 23-0 Golden Lions
1996: Transvaal 55-23 Crusaders