Blues v Crusaders Super Rugby Preview

Out of the last six Super Rugby matches between Auckland based Blues and the Christchurch based Crusaders the Blues have won just two.

Overall the Blues have played the Crusaders 26 times in Super Rugby since 1996 and they have won 11 matches, lost 15 matches and there have been no draws.

Those 11 wins give the Blues a record of winning 42% of their matches against the Crusaders with an average score of Blues 22 Crusaders 25.

This weekend the match will be played at Eden Park in Auckland which is home for the Blues and where the teams have met on 11 occasions.

In those 11 matches the Blues have won 6 matches and lost six matches. that gives the Blues a record of winning 55% of their home matches against in Auckland against the Crusaders.

The average score when the Blues play the Crusaders in Auckland is Blues 22 Crusaders 21.

The Blues have played 14 matches so far this season and they have won three matches. The Blues have played six matches at home this season and they have won three. They have played four matches in Auckland and won three.

The Blues are second last in the overall standings while the Crusaders are in eighth place. The Crusaders can still qualify for the play offs but they need a bonus point victory to remain in the hunt for another week.

The Crusaders have also played 14 matches this season and they have won seven matches and lost seven. The Crusaders have played 6 matches away from home and they have won two.

In terms of selection the Crusaders have retained their back line from last week’s victory over the Hurricanes but made three changes in the forwards and four on the bench.

Wyatt Crockett returns to the number 1 jersey this week, while Alex Hodgman moves to the bench. Hookers Ben Funnell and Codie Taylor have rotated again so that Taylor takes the starting spot and at lock Dominic Bird comes into the team alongside Luke Romano.

The Blues have had to dig deep to get a team on the field this week as there are 12 players unavailable for selection. Will Lloyd (lock) and Joe Edwards (flanker) and Matt Vaega (fullback), get their first starts while replacement Airi Hunt (No 8) gains his first Super Rugby cap at Eden Park.

Replacement players, brought in to cover the large number of injured player – Nic Mayhew, Sione Mafileo, Chris Vui and Matt McGahan – are listed in the reserves while James Parsons takes on the captaincy again in his 49th Super Rugby cap for the Blues.

The Bookies have given the Blues an 11 point start for this Match – with an offer of a FREE $150 BET. The Crusaders have everything to play for in this match while the Blues will be playing for pride but with an under strength team. The Crusaders should win this by 8 or more with a bonus point.

This Match will be shown on TV in NZ, Aus, SA and in the UK on Sky Sports 3/HD.

Average score: Blues 22 Crusaders 25

Last six results
25 Apr 2015 Blues v Crusaders 15-29 Christchurch
05 Jul 2014 Blues v Crusaders 13-21 Christchurch
28 Feb 2014 Blues v Crusaders 35-24 Auckland
18 May 2013 Blues v Crusaders 3-23 Christchurch
01 Mar 2013 Blues v Crusaders 34-15 Auckland
19 May 2012 Blues v Crusaders 12-59 Christchurch

Blues overall record against the Crusaders
Played 26, Wins 11, Losses 15, Draws 0

Match No.110: Blues v Crusaders
Date : Saturday 6 June 2015
Venue : Eden Park, Auckland
Kick Off local: 19:35 local, 17:35 AEST, 09:35 SAST
Referee: Chris Pollock
Assistant Ref 1:Ben O’Keeffe
Assistant Ref 2:Jamie Nutbrown
TMO : Ben Skeen

Teams

Blues

1. Sam Prattley , 2. James Parsons (c) , 3. Ofa Tu’ungafasi , 4. Will Lloyd , 5. Josh Bekhuis , 6. Joe Edwards , 7. Brendon O’Connor , 8. Airi Hunt , 9. Jimmy Cowan , 10. Ihaia West , 11. Melani Nanai , 12. George Moala , 13. Hamish Northcott , 14. Ben Lam , 15. Matt Vaega

Replacements : 16. Keven Mealamu , 17. Nic Mayhew , 18. Sione Mafileo , 19. Hayden Triggs , 20. Chris Vui , 21. Jamison Gibson-Park , 22. Simon Hickey , 23. Matt McGahan.

Crusaders

1 Wyatt Crockett , 2 Codie Taylor, 3 Owen Franks ,4 Luke Romano, 5 Dominic Bird ,6 Matt Todd ,7 Richie McCaw (c), 8 Jordan Taufua ,9 Mitchell Drummond ,10 Dan Carter ,11 Nemani Nadolo ,12 David Havili ,13 Robbie Fruean ,14 Nafi Tuitavake ,15 Tom Taylor

Replacements : 16 Ben Funnell ,17 Alex Hodgman,18 Nepo Laulala ,19 Sam Whitelock,20 Luke Whitelock, 21 Andy Ellis ,22 Ryan Crotty, 23 Kieron Fonotia

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