The past weekend produced another classic weekend of Super Rugby. Firstly, the Blues managed to beat the Waratahs and then a dream of two South African sides featuring in the semi-finals was shattered when the Crusaders hammered the Sharks. I didn't manage to see the game between the Blues and the Waratahs live as it was in work time. I am a bit disappointed in the Waratahs as I thought they might beat the Blues. I did, however, see the Sharks vs Crusaders game and I think the scoreline is not a true reflection of the game.
The Sharks started really well and put the Crusaders under massive pressure at the breakdown. I am not sure if it was the referee allowing them to get away with murder or if it was just the Sharks who committed more players to the rucks. If it was the latter, then the Stormers will take a lot of heart from the number of turnovers the Sharks managed to secure.
Going into the second half, it really was any team's game, but two penalties and an intercept try gave the Crusaders what they needed to pull off a win. Keiran Reed is a magnificent player and he dominated the Sharks with bullocking runs and massive defence. His amazing anticipation led to the intercept try that broke the Sharks back. It will be a massive blow for the Crusaders if he can't play this weekend as he seems to be their talisman in the absence of Richie McCaw.
Talking about Richie McCaw, it seems as if he will be back to play against the Stormers this weekend. In my mind he really is the best open-side flanker the game of rugby has ever seen. If he does run out in front for the Crusaders it will be a major confidence booster for them. With the absence of Duane Vermeulen for the Stormers, his return might be the edge that the Crusaders need. The Crusaders vs Stormers rematch at Newlands has all the makings of a massive encounter. Tickets have been sold out well in advance and I have no doubt that there will be a massive Crusaders contingent in the stands.
Drown out the traitors
In the corresponding pool game earlier this year there were thousands of Crusaders supporters who hail from Cape Town and that really upset me. Most of these so-called Crusaders and All Blacks supporters have most probably never even been to New Zealand and now they are die-hard Crusaders supporters. I also hear that the New Zealand Supporters Club is based in Cape Town and has a clubhouse on council land. For me it is a case of some people not being able to forget the past and move on. These people obviously live with a lot of hatred in their hearts and the rest of us must not be intimidated by them. I want to urge every Stormers supporter to wear a Stormers jersey and bring a Stormers flag. When these clowns boo the Stormers when they run out, let's drown them out with our support for the best-supported franchise in the history of the competition. Let's show them that we will not stand back and let traitors dictate what happens on the hallowed ground of Newlands. Let's also hope the Blues beat the Reds, which will mean we have a home final against another New Zealand team, which will have to fly halfway around the world to come to Cape Town. Go Stormers, your real supporters will be there in full flight!
Corné Krige; former captain of the Springboks has had a successful rugby career, playing 39 tests for South African in total of 18 of which were as Captain as well as leading the Springboks in the World Cup in 2003. Corné now lives in Melkbosstrand with his wife Justine and three children. He owns his own company, CK Outdoor which specializes in Outdoor Advertising and is sports contributor to Bizcommunity's BizLifestyle section.
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