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Crusaders player ratings vs Chiefs | Super Rugby Pacific

By Alex McLeod
(Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

The Crusaders have bounced back from their first loss of the season to beat the Chiefs in their rematch in Hamilton, prevailing in a 34-19 Super Rugby Pacific win at FMG Stadium Waikato.

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Here’s how they rated:

1. Finlay Brewis – 6

Quiet shift for the big man, who scrummaged well but wasn’t overly active on either side of the ball. Off in the 46th minute.

2. Codie Taylor – 7.5

Carried often and distributed well. Didn’t go wrong with his lineout throwing and was busy on defence, winning a turnover for the Crusaders. Racked up 13 tackles and capped his impressive performance, which lasted for the whole 80 minutes, with a well-deserved try.

3. Oli Jager – 6

Impressed with his carrying in the loose. Eight tackles from eight attempts and anchored the scrum well. Off in the 55th minute.

4. Scott Barrett (c) – 7

A strong showing at the set piece was counter-balanced by, for the most part, some good ball-handling skills. Won most of his side’s lineout ball and won all 12 of his tackles without fail.

5. Quinten Strange – 6

Acquitted himself well. Won lineout ball for his side and got his mitts on the ball on occasion. A great back-up to have for Sam Whitelock.

6. Ethan Blackadder – 7

A big shift on defence with 12 tackles. Was a pest for the opposition defence, constantly making himself a presence looking to thwart any attack they looked to instigate.

7. Tom Christie – 7.5

Another typically industrious performance by the Crusaders tearaway. Topped his side’s tackle count with 20 and was a nuisance at the breakdown, stealing four turnovers. Carried decently as well.

8. Cullen Grace – 7.5

Scored a well-worked try to open the scoring. Should have been rewarded with a try for great support play and handling skills to run in his second after scooping the ball up off his bootlaces, but it was scrubbed out due to Strange’s forward pass. Dangerous with ball in hand, which may be useful for his All Blacks aspirations.

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9. Bryn Hall – 6

Shaky box kick needlessly put the ball dead. Distributed crisply as always. Off in the 46th minute.

10. Richie Mo’unga – 7

Showed glimpses of his hot-stepping brilliance with ball in hand, showing his exceptional footwork to beat an array of Chiefs defenders.

11. George Bridge – 6

Coughed up the ball cold early in the second half. Ran up a heap of metres, finishing the match with 81 metres. Didn’t offer much in the way of attacking threat.

12. David Havili – 7

Did well to manipulate the Chiefs’ defensive line and set Will Jordan away for a try within the first 20 minutes. Was great in terms of distribution and had his tackle count enter the double digits, but disappointed himself with one kick that sailed out on the full. Still an admirable effort in his 100th match.

13. Leicester Fainga’anuku – 7

Plenty of power and strength to crash through a number of Chiefs defenders and dot down right by the posts. Offered plenty with ball in hand, although some defensive frailties led to three missed tackles. Off in the 76th minute.

14. Chay Fihaki – 4

Not the performance he would have been after. Needed to make a statement to push himself up an outside back pecking order that also features Jordan, Sevu Reece, George Bridge, Leicester Fainga’anuku and Braydon Ennor. Instead he only ran for three metres and missed three of his four tackle attempts. Off in the 46th minute.

15. Will Jordan – 8.5

Scored his obligatory try inside the opening quarter of the match. Chalked up a ton of running metres, as is normally the case, topping the count with a whopping 143 metres from 12 carries. Proved himself as a quality prospect at the breakdown as well, nabbing three turnovers. A quality player.

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Reserves

16. Fletcher Newell – N/A

17. George Bower – 6

On in the 46th minute. Brilliant work to strip the Chiefs of the ball in general play. Quite mobile for a prop.

18. Tamaiti Williams – 6

On in the 55th minute. A behemoth of a man who added size and power to his side’s pack, which was valuable at set piece time.

19. Mitchell Dunshea – N/A

On in the 52nd minute before departing again due to injury in the 69th minute.

20. Corey Kellow – NA

On in the 69th minute.

21. Mitchell Drummond – 6

On in the 46th minute. Added a lot of impetus with his fresh legs, to the benefit of the Crusaders.

22. Fergus Burke – NA

On in the 76th minute.

23. Sevu Reece – 8

On in the 46th minute. Provided plenty of spark off the bench. Wonderful finishing ability was enough to see him through for his 37th try as a Crusader, the third-most in franchise history. Continued to look threatening throughout. Should start next week.

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