The Crusaders cruised past the Blues 34-11 in their Super Rugby match on Saturday at Eden Park in New Zealand. Ihaia West kick started the game and was the first to register points on the scoreboard. This was after his team won a penalty which he slotted over in the fourth minute. Three minutes later he scored another penalty after Richie McCaw was penalised for illegal play at a ruck.
The home team virtually controlled the opening ten minutes of the game. In the 13th minute things changed in favour of the visitors. Daniel Carter played a cross kick which Nemani Nadolo caught with one hand in mid air, jumping over a tackle to fall over the try line.
Carter converted the try. In the 21st minute John Kirwan’s men won back possession in their own danger zone after Robert Fruean dropped the ball. This was after Fruean’s teammates had successfully won four scrums in as many minutes trying to penetrate the opposition’s defence without success.
Four minutes later Carter slotted a penalty to bring his total points for this season to 100 for the 10th time in his career. In the 33rd minute Todd Blackadder’s men took a quick lineout which Luke Romano capitalised on to get over the try line. The TMO decision ruled that the try was legitimate – giving Carter a chance to successfully convert the try.
The Crusaders went into half-time with a 17-6 advantage. Five minutes into the second half the visitors were dominating play and rightly won a penalty which Carter again scored. In the 59th minute Carter kicked deep, only to see Ben Lam cover at the back.
However the winger made a wrong decision by trying to counter. He eventually found himself down over his own try line. The Saders were awarded a penalty try from the resulting play which Carter happily converted.
With Blackadder’s men looking for the bonus point, they used a drive to send Matt Todd over the try line. Carter was at hand to convert once again. The Blues would get their own try five minutes from time.
This was after Lam did well to fend off a defender making space for himself to get over the try line as the match concluded.