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Crusaders smash Reds

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Update: 9:34PM THE Queensland Reds crashed to their equal worst losing streak since their 2007 Super Rugby wooden-spoon year with a humiliating 57-29 loss to the Crusaders on Sunday.

The Cantabrians ran in six tries at Suncorp Stadium - five after trailing 17-16 at halftime - to dish out the spiralling Reds' fifth straight loss in a season of woe.

For the third week in a row, Queensland were badly exposed, overpowered and outskilled by a Kiwi opponent.

Although they scored four tries of their own for a consolation bonus point, the Reds play bordered on shambolic at times in the second half as the Crusaders clinically punished a litany of errors.

Their scrum outmuscled the home side in front of a 34,010 Mothers' Day crowd and Brisbane-raised Fijian winger Nemani Nadolo also rubbed salt into their wounds with two tries.

In-form flyhalf Colin Slade kicked 11 from 11 for the seven-time champions to notch their first half-century on Australian soil.

It was also the highest-scoring Super match ever played at Suncorp Stadium.

Queensland did come to play in an exciting first half, jumping to a 17-10 lead with two sweet backline tries while the visitors were down a man with halfback Andy Ellis in the sin bin.

But their second-half capitulation ended a 20-match run of winning home games when leading at halftime.

It was sparked by prop Wyatt Crockett's 43rd minute try when he caught out lazy defenders from a quick tap.

Two minutes later winger Johnny McNichol crossed for the first of his two tries after a terrible kick and chase by the lethargic Reds.

"Two soft tries at the start of the second half just isn't good enough," said Reds skipper James Horwill.

Queensland were effectively killed off when no players contested a high ball on halfway and No.8 Luke Whitelock sprinted away.

Quade Cooper did set up three of the Reds tries but also delivered a poor second-half display which included an easy intercept try for McNichol.

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