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Blues rout Brumbies; Crusaders defeated

Contrasting games for the Crusaders and the Blues in Super Rugby in their latest matches. One moved to outright last, the other into clear second.

The Western Force heaped more pain on the Crusaders to send them to the bottom of the Super Rugby Pacific ladder with a 37-15 bonus-point victory over the fallen champions in Perth.

The Blues were ruthless in their 46-7 win over the ACT Brumbies, the best of the Aussie sides at a wet Eden Park.

At Perth former Wallabies star Kurtley Beale made a good debut for the Force his first game in Super Rugby since 2020.


It was the home sides first win over the Crusaders in more than a decade and showed plenty of frailty in the champions play.

The Crusaders are now 1-7 for the season with coach Rob Penney under big pressure, but in reality his players made dumb decisions and lacked discipline.

The Crusaders actually scored first through Levi Aumua, but from then on it was the home side all the way.

Crusaders win Sevu Reece surpassed Caleb Ralph as the leading try-scorer, 53 for the franchise, but celebrations will be put on hold as the forwards were out-muscled and the backs were out-played

The Crusaders now host the Rebels at home, which won't be easy against the resurgent Melbourne side.

The Blues move into second in Super Rugby Pacific, the Crusaders to outright last
The Blues celebrate one of their seven tries against the Brumbies at Eden Park, the Crusaders had nothing to celebrate PHOTO: SUPER RUGBY PACIFIC

Eden Park once again proved Australian rugby's graveyard as the Blues put the Brumbies away scoring seven tries to one.

The Brumbies suffered their heaviest defeat to the Blue in a mismatch between the two sides previously sitting in joint second place.

A rout certainly didn't look on the cards early on as after Blues halfback Taufa Funaki was yellow-carded for being offside while pulling off a try-saving tackle on Ollie Sapsford.

But Hoskins Sotutu, following a bust from flanker Dalton Papali'i, when the Blues were down to 14 men put the hosts up 7-0 against the run of play.

The try proved the turning point of the match as the Blues converted their clear dominance into a double-digit lead when destructive winger Caleb Clarke burst over to bag the Blues' second try seven minutes from halftime.

An error from, Noah Lolesio gave the Blues a free kick, with Sotutu punishing the error with his second five-pointer to earn his team a 24-0 lead at the break.

Papali'i then scored off a driving maul before veteran Brumbies prop James Slipper was sin-binned for a dangerous tackle.

Further tries to front-rowers Ricky Riccitelli and Funaki added to the  Brumbies defeat as their Eden Park hoodoo extended to 11 years.

Blues 46 (Hoskins Sotutu 2, Caleb Clarke, Dalton Papali’i, Taufa Funaki, Ricky Riccitelli, Kurt Eklund tries; Harry Plummer 4 con, pen) ACT Brumbies 7 (Luke Reimer try; Noah Lolesio con). HT: 24-0

Western Force 37 (Chase Tiatia, Tom Horton 2, Sam Carter, Carlo Tizzano tries; Ben Donaldson 5 pen, con) Crusaders 15 (Levi Aumua, George Bell, Sevu Reece tries). HT: 16-5


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