Home team Away Team


  • Fonotia,
    Penalty goals: Taylor (3),
14 - 13


  • de Allende,
    Penalty goals: Catrakilis (2),
    Conversions: Catrakilis,
  • Super Rugby
  • Overall Group
  • 8th Mar 2014
  • KO 06:35
  • Ground: AMI Stadium, Christchurch

Super Rugby: Crusaders v Stormers preview

Last updated: 7th March 2014  

Jean de Villiers Stormers 2013

Jean de Villiers: history is against Stormers in Christchurch

Colin Slade congratulated after scoring for Crusaders

Crusaders still searching for first win of 2014 Super Rugby campaign

Related links




Also see

The Crusaders host the Stormers in Christchurch on Saturday with both sides already under pressure early in the Super Rugby season.

Both have made underwhelming starts to the season. The Crusaders have lost twice, while the Stormers are yet to convince as genuine contenders for the title despite one win from their two fixtures.

Although the Crusaders are at the bottom of the Super Rugby table and despite the loss of All Blacks captain Richie McCaw, who is out of action for eight weeks with a broken thumb, it's still early in the competition and the seven-times champions are notoriously slow starters.

But they are determined to get their 2014 show on the road and the Christchurch-based outfit's assistant coach Dave Hewett said the manner in which the Crusaders gave up a convincing lead in last weekend's loss to the Blues was thoroughly unlike a team which has won seven championships.

He said the Crusaders' coaches and players were trying to respond calmly to the failures that performance has highlighted.

"Yes, you can get angry and we are angry and they (the players) are angry," explained Hewett.

"They are all angry with themselves and they are angry with their performance."


The Crusaders hold the historical edge over the Stormers having won 14 of the previous 18 matches between these two franchises. Adding to that, they have never lost to the Stormers in Christchurch which makes the visitors' task more daunting.

The Stormers didn't overly impress in their 19-18 victory over the Hurricanes in Cape Town and know they have to deliver a much-improved performance if they want to change their dismal record in Christchurch.

Apart from their poor form in Christchurch, South African teams in general have failed to inspire against the Crusaders since 1996. Out of the 44 matches hosted by the Crusaders against teams from South Africa, they've lost twice and drawn twice.

That equates to a staggering 91 per cent winning rate, which is by far the best of any team against foreign opposition. The average score between the Crusaders and South African opposition over this period is 37-19, with the New Zealanders scoring four tries to two on average.

Stormers captain Jean de Villers knows that a victory this weekend will be a big boost for his side on their overseas tour, which also includes games against the Chiefs, Brumbies and Reds, who, like the Crusaders, have all won the tournament already.

The men from the Cape suffered a shock defeat to the Lions in their opener before their narrow win over the Hurricanes. An area of concern is their back-line play which has lacked imagination at the best of times.

Despite that, they possess potent attackers in De Villiers, Gio Aplon and Jaco Taute, who could swing the course of a match with moments of brilliance. They also know that the Crusaders' poor start to the season presents them with an ideal opportunity to break their duck in Christchurch.

Crusaders: 15 Slade, 14 McNicholl, 13 Lee-Lo, 12 Crotty, 11 Dagg, 10 Taylor, 9 Heinz; 1 Crockett, 2 Flynn, 3 Franks, 4 Romano, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 6 Luke Whitelock, 7 Todd, 8 Read (capt)

Replacements: 16 Funnell, 17 Perry, 18 Laulala, 19 Bird, 20 Taufua, 21 Ellis, 22 Bleyendaal, 23 Fonotia

Stormers: 15 Taute, 14 Van Wyk, 13 De Villiers (capt), 12 De Allende, 11 Aplon, 10 Catrakilis, 9 Groom; 1 Kitshoff, 2 Ntubeni, 3 Malherbe, 4 Rhodes, 5 Steenkamp, 6 Fourie, 7 Burger, 8 Vermeulen

Replacements: 16 Liebenberg, 17 Kebble, 18 Cilliers, 19 Botha, 20 Carr, 21 Schreuder, 22 Grant, 23 Tagicakibau

Click here for more betting
Forthcoming Super Rugby Fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday 13th February
Super Rugby
06:35Crusaders vs Melbourne Rebels
08:40Brumbies vs Reds
17:10Lions vs Hurricanes
Saturday 14th February
06:35Blues vs Chiefs
15:05Sharks vs Cheetahs
17:05Bulls vs Stormers
Sunday 15th February
06:05Waratahs vs Western Force
Friday 20th February
06:35Chiefs vs Brumbies
08:40Melbourne Rebels vs Waratahs
17:10Bulls vs Hurricanes
Saturday 21st February
06:35Highlanders vs Crusaders
08:40Reds vs Western Force
15:05Stormers vs Blues
17:10Sharks vs Lions
Friday 27th February
06:35Highlanders vs Reds
11:00Western Force vs Hurricanes
17:10Cheetahs vs Blues
Saturday 28th February
06:35Chiefs vs Crusaders
08:40Melbourne Rebels vs Brumbies
15:05Bulls vs Sharks
17:10Lions vs Stormers
Friday 6th March
06:35Chiefs vs Highlanders
08:40Brumbies vs Western Force
Saturday 7th March
06:35Blues vs Lions
08:40Reds vs Waratahs

Experts & Blogs

Phil Edwards

Phil Edwards

Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com