Crusaders lock Sam Whitelock in the thick of it early. Photo: KAI SCHWOERER/GETTY IMAGES

Crusaders hold off Chiefs to stay unbeaten at home in 35


The rain didn’t let up all game and the slippery ball and surface made for an error-ridden first half from both sides. It was a slow start to the match, but Will Jordan set things alight for the Crusaders just before the break.

Richie Mo’unga executed a brilliant cross kick to Sevu Reece who took it cleanly and offloaded onto Jordan who scored in the right corner to give his side a 10-3 lead at half time.

It was Jordan again, early in the second half who punished the Chiefs. Reece caught his opposition napping and took a quick throw-in, before again offloading to Jordan who sprinted away to score on the right flank, virtually unmarked.

The Chiefs fought back late in the second spell and a try to Sean Wainui and a penalty to Damian McKenzie saw them trail by just five with less than 10 minutes to go. They were hot on attack and looked threatening again before more handling errors sealed their fate.

The Crusaders managed to capitalise on a couple of key moments, and it was enough to get them over the line in front of their home fans in Addington.

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Next week, the Crusaders head to Dunedin for the battle of the South against the Highlanders on Saturday night, while the Chiefs host the Hurricanes on Sunday afternoon.

Crusaders: Will Jordan, Sevu Reece, Braydon Ennor, Jack Goodhue, George Bridge, Richie Mo’unga, Bryn Hall, Whetukamokamo Douglas, Billy Harmon, Cullen Grace, Mitchell Dunshea, Sam Whitelock, Michael Alaalatoa, Codie Taylor (c), Joe Moody. Reserves: Brodie McAlister, George Bower, Oliver Jager, Luke Romano, Ethan Blackadder, Mitchell Drummond, David Havili, Leicester Faingaanuku.

Chiefs: Damian McKenzie, Solomon Alaimalo, Quinn Tupaea, Anton Lienert-Brown, Sean Wainui, Aaron Cruden, Brad Weber, Pita Gus Sowakula, Sam Cane (c), Lachlan Boshier, Naitoa Ah Kuoi, Mitchell Brown, Nepo Laulala, Bradley Slater, Aidan Ross. Reserves: Samisoni, Taukei’aho, Reuben O’Neill, Ross Geldenhuys, Adam Thomson, Mitchell Karpik, Lisati Milo-Harris, Kaleb Trask, Tumua Manu

Story Courtesy/Super Rugby NZ

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