Select a team
- London Irish
- London Welsh
- New Zealand
- South Africa
- Cardiff Blues
Super Rugby: Crusaders go second after overpowering Force
Crusaders moved up to second place in the conference table with this decisive three tries to one success over Western Force.
A first-half score for Johnny McNicholl, plus two penalty tries were largely responsible for seeing the Christchurch-based outfit in control throughout the 80 minutes.
Dane Haylett-Perry snatched one back for the Force, but they failed to live up to that billing as a collective and that, along with Sias Ebersohn's coversion, was all that they could muster in reply.
With both a dominant line-out and scrum, Crusaders were able to play the majority of the game in opposition territory and they forced several early errors, with Colin Slade capitalising by slotting over a 10th-minute penalty to give Crusaders the lead.
An Andy Ellis break looked to have created the game's first try for Crusaders' winger Nemani Nadolo, but desperate defence by the Force somehow kept him out.
However, that merely delayed the inevitable and, after further sustained pressure close to the visitors' line they conceded another penalty and Slade made no mistake with the boot to double their advantage.
With their tails up, Crusaders found further good field position, enabling Israel Dagg to send McNicholl racing over for the game's opening try, Slade adding the extras.
Play followed a similar pattern throughout the half, with Slade slotting over another penalty before the break, after an exhausting defensive effort saw the Force concede again.
Even the most optimistic Western Force fan would have been hard-pressed to summon up too much enthusiasm for a comeback, despite Haylewtt-Perry getting them on the scoreboard with around half an hour to play.
The try did, at least, signal the best period of the match for the Force, but Crusaders' defence matched everything that was thrown at them. The home side eventually pulled further clear with a penalty try after winning a line-out and driving for the line.
Similarly, they chose a scrum from a penalty in the dying seconds and were awarded another penalty try from the scrum, goaled by Slade to complete an emphatic success.
Sky Bet Odds:Click Here for Your Free Bet
|Saturday 2nd August|
|Waratahs 33 - 32 Crusaders|
|Saturday 26th July|
|Waratahs 26 - 8 Brumbies|
|Crusaders 38 - 6 Sharks|
|Saturday 19th July|
|Sharks 31 - 27 Highlanders|
|Brumbies 32 - 30 Chiefs|
|Saturday 12th July|
|Stormers 10 - 34 Sharks|
|Lions 60 - 25 Cheetahs|
|Reds 3 - 34 Waratahs|
|Crusaders 34 - 8 Highlanders|
|Friday 11th July|
|Bulls 40 - 7 Melbourne Rebels|
|Brumbies 47 - 25 Western Force|
|Blues 8 - 11 Chiefs|
|Sunday 6th July|
|Waratahs 44 - 16 Highlanders|
|Saturday 5th July|
|Cheetahs 27 - 20 Sharks|
|Stormers 16 - 0 Bulls|
|Western Force 30 - 20 Reds|
|Crusaders 21 - 13 Blues|
|Friday 4th July|
|Lions 34 - 17 Melbourne Rebels|
|Chiefs 24 - 16 Hurricanes|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com