The seventh date of the Super Rugby Aotearoa made the definition spicy. With three dates left, Crusaders, Blues and Hurricanes will fight to consecrate themselves.
Crusaders seemed to be comfortably heading for a new title but Hurricanes appeared and embittered the Christchurch party. For his part, Blues achieved a long-suffering victory at home against the Chiefs and was two points behind the leader.
What is left for each of the candidates?
Without a doubt, Crusaders (19 points) is the best positioned is on the way to the title. The three-time champion is the pointer with 19 points at a distance of two with Blues and three with Hurricanes. The difference between those directed by Scott Robertson is that they do not have to meet a free date so they will play the three games on the remaining three dates. For the eighth he will visit Chiefs in Hamilton, then he will receive Highlanders in Christchurch and finally he will visit Blues in Auckland.
Blues (17 points) It was the sensation team of Super Rugby Aotearoa. With the support of Dan Carter, for now from outside, and the participation of Beauden Barrett added to young appearances such as Sotutu and Clarke, the cast of Auckland had not lost until date 5. He then suffered two consecutive falls, before Crusaders and Hurricanes and seemed to run out of clean and jerk. Date 7 gave life to the Blues, with their victory against Chiefs and the defeat of Crusaders they were again in the race. Blues must visit Highlanders the next date, he will complete his free day in the ninth and finally he will close receiving Crusaders at Eden Park.
Unlike Blues, Hurricanes (16 points) It didn’t have a good start. In the first three dates he could not win (he fell to Blues, Crusaders and was free) and Aotearoa started poorly. Since the return of Jordie Barrett and the great upward performance of some figures such as Laumape and TJ Perenara, the Hurricanes achieved four consecutive wins, including this weekend against Crusaders in Christchurch. The next day will be free and to dream of the Hurricanes title, he must win in the last two when he receives the Chiefs and visits Highlanders and Crusaders leave points on the way.
Date 8 (August 1 and 2)
Date 9 (August 8 and 9)
Date 10 (August 15 and 16)