Last night was the best of both Super Rugby sides in each country. One from Australia and the other across the ditch. It is Queensland Reds take on Crusaders at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. Perfect timing to commemorate the 10 year anniversary. When they battled it out for the 2011 Super Rugby final at the time. And Queensland trumped the most successful Super Rugby team for the major win.
Unfortunately it was not the same however when it comes to this game. Which is Round 2 of 5 in the 2021 Super Rugby Trans-Tasman. The defensive shape is one of the strengths Queensland have picked up. Which saw them win a few penalties. And eventually got it going with a couple of tries in the final 40. But for the majority they were disjointed in their attacking run. There was really little to no decoy runners around them through the channels. It backfired their passage of play that failed to bridge towards the execution. Thanks to the brilliant read from the Crusaders the away team got away with plenty of points on the board. Before it was way too late to catch up after the full 80.
On the other hand Crusaders were simply outstanding on all areas. They defended really well off the Reds impatient attacking test. It has gaps and holes around their corner. Which demonstrates poor communication & passage of play. And took advantage to their own mistakes. From there the away team were able to remain patient on the run home. Before Crusaders ultimately got around the Reds wall that accrued a whopping 60+ points. Richie Mo’unga has been sensational in the playmaker role via the physicality & kicking. So does Sam Whitelock on the second row who cancelled the Reds conversion plans. And Sevu Reece continues to light up with the executions on the right wing. That is how you see the best of attacking football which entertains their own fans.
The final score is 28-63. As none of the five Australian Super Rugby teams have yet to make up a win in this competition. While all five NZ sides have stiff competition towards the Top 2 spots going into Round 3. It can be awesome to have the best of both franchise/provincial clubs facing each other. Especially when we have saw this returned for the first time in 12-14 months. But so far it is not the same balance/competitiveness we hope to see on the field. It will take time for these teams here to adjust going into the 2022 season. As there is no South African clubs in there anymore. It may be a sigh of relief to Australia when they have a big job of closing the gap to AFL & NRL. Especially with Nine & Stan coming onboard this year that changed everything on TV/Streaming. We are just in the early stages of rebuilding the exposure of rugby union in Australia. That is why they are putting their bid to win the 2027 Rugby World Cup. And that would mean compensating the broken promises where they fell off after 2003. For now all we have to do is support these teams up with three rounds left. Maybe the final if one of the Australian sides did end up in an unlikely Top 2 finish.