The Canterbury Crusaders scored eight tries to earn a 54-28 bonus point against the New South Wales Waratahs at Wollongong Stadium on Saturday as New Zealand sides continue to dominate the 2021 Super Rugby Trans-Tasman competition. The loss was the Waratahs 11th in a row this year and leaves them with a loss before tying the Melbourne Rebels’ 12-game record for an Australian team in Super Rugby.
Eight different players scored tries for the Crusaders while Richie Mo’unga scored 14 points as Scott Robertson’s side came within one point of the Wellington Hurricanes. The New Zealanders took the lead in Mitchell Drummond’s eighth minute, but Will Harrison’s kick kept the Waratahs in touch and the Crusaders had to work for the win.
The full back handed out a pair of penalties in the first 30 minutes to minimize damage despite Jack Whetton being sentenced. But three tries in the final 10 minutes of half-time shifted the momentum firmly in favor of the Crusaders.
Codie Taylor put the Crusaders 12-6 before Sevu Reece sold home defense a dummy that allowed him to sprint and score. On the stroke of halftime, Dallas McLeod completed another fine Crusader move that saw Super Rugby champions Aotearoa take a 26-9 lead in the meantime.
Scott Barrett’s try put the Crusaders further ahead two minutes into the second half, only for the Waratahs to rally and shoot within 10 points. Two tries in two minutes by Jack Maddocks and Izaia Perese on either side of a yellow card for Crusaders’ Oli Jager have given home fans hope.
But that was dashed when Leicester Fainga’anuku scored for the shorthanded visitors while Bryn Hall crawled down the line to further improve the Crusaders’ lead. Will Jordan scored in the corner after Fergus Burke’s cross kick to leave Alex Newsome’s late try as a consolation for the Waratahs as the New Zealanders clinched their third straight win over opposition Australia.
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