Crusaders vs B&I Lions



  • Well done the Crusaders for taking my advice. 😉

    The ref made some "interesting" calls but I thought that the Lions deserved their win. BTW, Raynal was also the ref in NZ-Ireland game in Chicago last year.

    I enjoyed the game despite the lack of tries and the numerous mistakes because it was intense. I always thought that the Crusaders might sneak it at the end with a late try but the LIons' defence was excellent and they forced the Crusaders into errors.

    BBBR should be OK for the Samoan test as he could have played last night.



  • @Tim Unhappy camp if the Irish and Scottish players can't get along and unite in their hatred of the English.



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    BTW, Raynal was also the ref in NZ-Ireland game in Chicago last year.

    "And I do not - 'ow you say - 'geev a fuck cuzzee bru', if you don't like eet. "

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  • Well, that was a bit disappointing. Well done Lions - comfortable winners, really.

    Slippery conditions made it a bit of a slugfest, which probably suited them more than us - but certainly didn't lend itself to scintillating backplay. I think the score very much reflects those conditions.

    First lesson - for the first time this season our short loose-forward trio got exposed at the lineout - where we only had two genuine jumpers. Against an international lineout with a couple of taller loose forwards, that got found out. They marked Romano and Sammy tightly and what's usually an important strength was beaten. Read or Douglas might have made quite a difference there.

    The advantage we had in the scrums in the first half was completely nullified by the ref. - some potentially justified, but you certainly couldn't say there was any leniency - plus the obvious one that seemed completely wrong.

    Lions defence was great. Completely smothered our efforts and there was far too much shoveling the ball along the line. Needed Drummie out there earlier and then Mo'unga needed to take it to the line more. But overall, Lions domination of territory and possession didn't let us play enough. The few opportunities we had to score got messed up - by the forwards, by Bridge, and by Mo'unga not being able to outrun their flanker - what the hell was that? Richie's pretty quick, so that guy must be lightning!

    For us - Goodhue, Sam Whitelock, Dagg in the first half, but not the second and Todd were probably the best. Scrum was good when it wasn't getting pinged. Defense was pretty good.

    Unbeaten season gone! Not good enough! 🙂

    Sam Whitelock's post-match talk wasn't his best - he might get to read a bit about that. Someone's bound to be offended. 🙂



  • Just got back from the game. Haven't seen much of the Crusaders but they saved their worst for tonight I take it. George Bridge couldn't catch a cold out there. Don't know why Whitelock kept turning down shots at goal and going for the line as if they were playing the Cheetahs or Blues or something like that and as people have said, Mounga's kicking was very aimless for most of the night. Not a good night for the Crusaders backs but credit to the Lions they played well and their fans were good value throughout the night.



  • The most amazing thing about both backlines bumbling it on attack is that this is the first game in about 3 years I have seen where the ref has got both lines onside for the majority of the game.

    In heaven, the game is refereed by someone with a dodgy grasp of English as a second language and therefore the players have to stop cheating on their own initiative as God is all-seeing - instead of cheating, just a bit, but every single time ..... until they are told to stop.



  • A curious comment:



  • @Tim said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Dagg looks shit this year.

    Give it a rest, you said exactly the same thing last year



  • @hydro11 I don't think the crusaders Rush defence is quite the same though.



  • @Tim Wasn't he a former Crusaders halfback?



  • @SammyC ah but this year I'm not just trolling. He doesn't look ready to play the Lions.



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Tim Wasn't he a former Crusaders halfback?

    Yep.



  • Good result for the tour, so glad the BILs fronted up and won. All in all a much better performance.

    AWJ confounded his critics (me) with a good 80 minute performance, Farrell ran the show well. Still not sure about the centre combo and I guess much will depend upon Davies HIA results. You have to feel sorry for Stuart Hogg, just as he's getting himself into the game he gets crocked, will he have the chance to press for test selection now? Time is short so maybe not, which would be a shame. Williams is obviously being groomed for the other wing spot (North to start on the other flank), though I thought Watson looked sharper and quicker than Williams, though he could be an option at FB. SOB looked good and as @MiketheSnow said earlier O'Mahoney put down a marker today and totally wiped out his last performance. Selection in the back row will be interesting.



  • @Tim said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @SammyC ah but this year I'm not just trolling. He doesn't look ready to play the Lions.

    I think someone else mentioned he looked like he'd taken a knock. Prior to that he just looked short of a gallop as you'd expect coming back from injury.



  • @Chris-B. what did he say? Haven't seen the PC police going nuts on Stuff or FB yet...



  • @Gunner Just not very gracious - stuff about Crusaders' mistakes letting the Lions into the game and then reiterating that when offered the chances through leading questions to say nice things about the winners. Nothing too awful, just something I thought the NH Press are likely to pounce on.



  • @Chris-B. Calling a spade a spade then, good on him. F@@k the British press and their compliment hunt!



  • Gifford is reinforcing the stereotype about KIwis always blaming the ref for defeats.



  • Okay, my 2 cents. I haven't read most of the comments, because to my great surprise (well, not really), all these Ferners who have always expressed their dislike towards the Crusaders (remember the hatiest team thread?) suddenly come out of the woodworks to dish the Crusaders and individual players. The frustration about the Crusaders being unbeaten this Super Rugby season must be huge. And the frustration with some of their players not being selected in the AB squad. Really pathetic.

    Anyway, I'll try to be more objective about the game.

    I never expected a Crusaders win and thought this was - on paper- a much stronger Lions squad than in the previous game (I didn't join the pre-game criticism of the Lions line-up for a reason). This was a near test-strength Lions squad. While the Crusaders have an All Black tight 5 & openside, their backline had only Dagg, no longer fringe AB Tamanivalu and for the rest players in their early twenties, most in their first or 2nd year of SR. They have great skills, but no test experience. I'm still surprised that they are unbeaten in SR, so not really surprised that they were not coping in this game.

    Mo'unga wasn't shit. He got slow ball from Hall which made it very easy for the Lions to advance with speed (because they didn't have to guess where the ball was going), giving Mo'unga very little to no time to kick the ball. He only kicked one ball out on the full. He also made some excellent kicks, including the two cross-kicks which were deliberately knocked-on, which went unpenalised (should have been yellow on both occasions). Mo'unga dropped one high ball, slipped a couple of times (like other players, wearing the wrong boots?) & conceded 1 turnover (but also won one); he made crucial tackles (his tackle percentage was 100%), one of which may have saved a try. He wasn't able to play his usual game, due to the Lions coming up very quickly; previews had predicted that the Lions would target him & that's what they did - very effectively.

    A lot of what applies to Mo'unga regarding the Lions being very effective in shutting down the Crusaders attack early, applied basically to almost all backs. That didn't make those backs bad; the Lions were just better. A good learning point for Robertson for the rest of the SR season and for Hansen & co for the test matches.

    I think the coaches should have named Bateman at 12, who has more experience and might have been able to cope better and Havili could have been more effective from fullback. I'd have preferred Dagg on the right wing and Tamanivalu on the left. I have been keeping an eye on Bridge and for at least the last three or four games, he has been missing crucial tackles. His good attack earlier in the season, which resulted in multiple tries, doesn't seem to work anymore and he is still weak on defence (he conceded most turnovers - 5 - tonight). I would have named him on the bench, or would have picked Mataele, who still has the same flaws, but is physically stronger.

    About Dagg, I have a strong impression that he plays like he's trying to spare his knee. It's almost as if he's afraid to get injured again. After all, he has had these knee injuries before and basically that has kept him out of the RWC2015. Looks like a mental thing to me that will probably (hopefully) get right in the AB environment.

    Goodhue was a stand-out in the back; he and Mo'unga were the only backs to get one clean break. Matt Todd got the third. That was all, 3 clean breaks. Crotty was dearly missed in the backline; he's a master organiser and communicator, and his absence might have been decisive. This only emphasises how important it is to get him right for AB duties; he's the best of all midfielders in this respect. His defence is also excellent.

    The line-out was terrible, particularly early in the game. While Taylor had a few bad throws, the problems seemed more with guys in the line-out. Even always reliable Sam Whitelock missed now and then. Now I think of it, the whole squad looked nervous. Maybe that's the answer, I don't know.

    Front row went fine. It was just the ref who was shit. He clearly doesn't get how the scrum works. He was also really inconsistent with rucks & mauls. The commentators said that it seemed that there was a language barrier and that that was why he didn't call 'ruck' or 'maul' or warnings to stay onside (as we're used to in SR). Some penalties came totally out of the blue. And some of those penalties resulted in penalty goals and gave the Lions the win.

    The Crusaders defence, particularly close to their try line, worked pretty well, hence the zero tries. This game was lost on penalties and Farrell being good with his boot. It could easily have gone the other way if the Lions player who knocked the ball on deliberately close to his try line had received a well-deserved yellow card. We'll never know.

    To be perfectly clear, the Lions deserved their win. Not because the Crusaders were bad though, but because the Lions were better.

    Anyway, Blues fans have something to cheer about. The Blues beat a team (though with a weaker line-up) that beat the Crusaders. They're still not in the SR play-offs.



  • @Stargazer said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Okay, my 2 cents. I haven't read most of the comments, because to my great surprise (well, not really), all these Ferners who have always expressed their dislike towards the Crusaders (remember the hatiest team thread?) suddenly come out of the woodworks to dish the Crusaders and individual players. The frustration about the Crusaders being unbeaten this Super Rugby season must be huge. And the frustration with some of their players not being selected in the AB squad. Really pathetic.

    LOL. You have to take shit for one game this year and you get that worked up.



  • Mo'unga wasn't shit. He got slow ball from Hall which made it very easy for the Lions to advance with speed (because they didn't have to guess where the ball was going), giving Mo'unga very little to no time to kick the ball. He only kicked one ball out on the full. He also made some excellent kicks, including the two cross-kicks which were deliberately knocked-on, which went unpenalised (should have been yellow on both occasions). Mo'unga dropped one high ball, slipped a couple of times (like other players, wearing the wrong boots?) & conceded 1 turnover (but also won one); he made crucial tackles (his tackle percentage was 100%), one of which may have saved a try. He wasn't able to play his usual game, due to the Lions coming up very quickly; previews had predicted that the Lions would target him & that's what they did - very effectively.

    Good to see the TSF Knight in shining armor award wrapped up so early in the year.



  • Tight five went well overall.
    Romano missing two kickoffs was poor.
    Lineout suffered with Whitelock being the only elite jumper.
    Mo'unga was poor in general. I'm surprised they didn't bring Hunt on earlier.
    Havili looked like he hadnt played 12 all year.
    Goodhue was class.
    Dagg took some great contested high balls.

    Good things from an All Blacks perspective is how well the front row went. But also that apart from four fifths of the tight five (and Dagg), none of the rest of the Crusaders team tonight will be wearing black in a fortnight.



  • @Stargazer Now THAT is what I call a passionate Crusaders fan. Love ya work mate.



  • @Tim said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Stargazer said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Okay, my 2 cents. I haven't read most of the comments, because to my great surprise (well, not really), all these Ferners who have always expressed their dislike towards the Crusaders (remember the hatiest team thread?) suddenly come out of the woodworks to dish the Crusaders and individual players. The frustration about the Crusaders being unbeaten this Super Rugby season must be huge. And the frustration with some of their players not being selected in the AB squad. Really pathetic.

    LOL. You have to take shit for one game this year and you get that worked up.

    I get worked up when all the worms come out of the woodworks to hate on their hatiest players or team. This is by no means the first thread in which this happens. You only have to read all threads about AB selections. Sometimes objectivity is miles away and it's more about 'party lines' and making up reasons to not to prefer a player from a team people don't support. I defend any player/team who is given shit like that. I have done that with players from any team. However, Crusaders haters do it, obviously, more towards Crusaders players and there seem to be many Crusaders haters on the Fern. Also, these same Ferners are the first to start yelling when someone criticises a player of their favourite team. I can still remember how some Ferners were breaking down BB last year when he was going so well for the Canes, as soon as some other Ferners (including me) were suggesting that he would leapfrog Cruden to become the no. first-five for the ABs. I argued against all the nonsense that was spewed and defended arguments why IMO he should be the starting ten (and not the super-sub). Luckily, Hansen has validated that view by means of his selections.

    Don't think that will happen with other views I have expressed about certain players. For example, I have been calling for a while that I'd like Bird back in the ABs (before it became 'popular' this year) and Goodes in the front row (his concussions haven't helped him) while others were hyping Hames. Nanai and Havili would get my vote over McKenzie and Naholo, but not Bridge. So funny, if you write this all together in one post, it's harder to put a label on me, isn't it?



  • @African-Monkey said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Stargazer Now THAT is what I call a passionate Crusaders fan. Love ya work mate.

    Nope. You still don't get it.



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  • @Rocky-Rockbottom said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    jaysus, Stargazer, imagine if he was a Blues fan, every time his team lost we'd get the Magna Carta seguing into War & fucken Peace

    It has nothing to do with the Crusaders losing. You obviously missed my comment that the Lions deserved their win. I just responded to some Ferners who were exaggerating how bad they were playing (they weren't that bad; they just weren't good either) and to the ill-reasoned/unsubstantiated criticism of some players that I just don't agree with. I know some Ferners like to talk about players in terms that sound like attacks, and that just irks me. Not just when Crusaders players are the target. It's just not the way I like to talk about people. Too bad if you don't like that.





  • Of that Chch team I doubt if more than four will start first test. However, nothing for Lions to worry about as little difference between NZ Super rugby and ABs.



  • @Stargazer said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Okay, my 2 cents. I haven't read most of the comments, because to my great surprise (well, not really), all these Ferners who have always expressed their dislike towards the Crusaders (remember the hatiest team thread?) suddenly come out of the woodworks to dish the Crusaders and individual players. The frustration about the Crusaders being unbeaten this Super Rugby season must be huge. And the frustration with some of their players not being selected in the AB squad. Really pathetic.

    Holy persecution complex, Batman!

    Totally not a Crusaders fan though, right?



  • From a Lions perspective I was impressed with 1-10. The midfield and the back three less impressive. Way too many blown opportunities. For all the bluster about Te'o his skillset is still more akin to league backrower than rugby midfielder. Watson looked dangerous but then he also watched the ball bounce and he seems like not the most secure fullback around, would only consider him for the wing. Liam Williams too many mistakes and then a horrible option to chip when he did finally latch onto one.

    Test team:
    Vunipola
    Owens
    Cole
    AWJ
    Kruis
    POM
    SOB
    Faletau

    Murray
    Sexton
    North
    Henshaw
    Joseph
    Watson
    Payne

    It's a difficult selection, there isn't a lot between most of the players. A lack of really world class guys screaming pick me unfortunately. Cole and Owens come in to help out the scrum. In the outside backs you have to go for the guys most likely to finish an opportunity when they get it.



  • That was disappointing, but gives the tour back its edge.

    Taufau was quite poor I thought, Hall was so unbelievably slow, Mounga couldn't cope with the (at times clearly offside) rush defence, Crotty was badly missed, and Bridge had a mare.

    And the ref rode the Crusaders scrum (that non-penalty about 5 minutes before half time especially).

    This is a great game for Hansen and co - they know they will be facing a Lions side where Murray can land a box-kick on a 5c piece, and good luck stealing Lions lineout ball.

    AB backs will be better than the Crusaders though for sure.



  • Hall is from Auckland somewhere right? Mounga is from Canterbury? What are you guys talking about, obviously Mounga was great, Hall is to blame for his dropsies, poor options and awful kicks.

    @Stargazer whinge all you want, but as said, don't get all persecuted because people dare criticise your crusaders. Myself and many others who've commented have no axe to grind, very weird you'd go off on one about that.



  • Whee!



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Well done the Crusaders for taking my advice. 😉

    They read our comments yesterday and took one for the team ,

    Thats all it was ..... no reason for people getting their knickers in a twist 🙂



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Gifford is reinforcing the stereotype about KIwis always blaming the ref for defeats.

    He certainly is. I think it's a bit pathetic myself - yes the ref was a bit clueless at the scrum, and the offside lined seemed a bit optional at times, but twasn't the ref that cost the Crusaders the match.

    TBH (hindsight is a great thing), we all should have foreseen this result - the Lions were always going to match the Crusaders pack, and if you do that you're talking about Bryn Hall vs Conor Murray, Owen Farrell vs Richie Mounga (which Lions fan told me Farrell is not a cert for the test side...), and a Crusaders backline with only one current AB.

    In hindsight again, Bateman should have been at 12, with Dagg on the wing, Havili at FB, and Bridge in the stands.



  • @Billy-Tell yeah hindsight is a wonderful thing , but yeah thats it in a nutshell , didnt get the forward domination they are used to at super rugby level , and the backline fielded , collectively lacked threats



  • Ref was very poor, missed a lot both ways, but as we ought to have learnt from the past, take the refs inability to ref properly out by adapting, something McCaw was a master at



  • @pakman But stargazer said it was a near full strength side out there last night......



  • @Billy-Tell said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Gifford is reinforcing the stereotype about KIwis always blaming the ref for defeats.

    He certainly is. I think it's a bit pathetic myself - yes the ref was a bit clueless at the scrum, and the offside lined seemed a bit optional at times, but twasn't the ref that cost the Crusaders the match.

    And now Gregor Paul in the Herald is trying to blame the ref for the game, without quite saying he caused the Crusaders to lose.

    I think the big issue is many Kiwis, and most Crusader fans, were pretty much sure the all-conquering Crusaders would have no trouble blowing away a weak Lions side.

    And when their arrogance was punctured, they didn't like it. Someone had to be to blame -- and that left the ref as the only option.


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