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Crusaders survive

Maikeli Seru
Saturday, May 20, 2017

THE Crusaders, after surviving a tough Super Rugby thriller at the ANZ Stadium in Suva have remained unbeaten to remain on top of the New Zealand Conference.

Their 31-24 victory that delighted the sellout crowd at Fiji's capital earned them a New Zealand rugby club and tournament record of unbeaten runs after 12 matches.

The much fancied Crusaders which had two Fijians Seta Tamanivalu and Manasa Mataele trailed at the break 17-13.

They led from the start after flyhalf Richie Mo'unga answered two penalties after the Chiefs were penalised for offside and holding onto to the ball.

Crusaders 6-0 Chiefs.

The Chiefs scored their first try in the 20th to winger Tim Nanai-Williams to close the gap 6-5.

The Chiefs took the lead 10-6 after James Lowe touched down in the 24th minute when a chip kick bounced nicely to his favour.

Crusaders lock Pete Samu finished off a David Havili break to push the Crusaders ahead in the 27th minute to 10-13.

The Chiefs answered two minutes later for a converted try to lead at halftime 17-13.

The Crusaders started the second half with a try for 17-18 and replacement Ben Funnell finished off a Mataele break in the 58th minute to push them to 25-17 to Chiefs.

The Crusaders nailed a penalty to push their score to 28-17 before Aaron Cruden dived over for a another try and close the gap to 24-28

But the Crusaders had the last say with Mo'unga's penalty in the 76th minute to win 24-31.

Chiefs head coach Dave s Rennie said mistakes cost them a win in Suva.

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