Andrew Cornaga / PHOTOSPORT
Naitoa Ah Kuoi fends off Codie Taylor in the Chiefs’ last clash against the Crusaders in Hamilton.
SUPER RUGBY AOTEAROA FINAL 2021
Crusaders vs. Chiefs
Orangetheory Stadium, Christchurch
Saturday, 7:05 p.m.
After 10 weeks and 20 intense New Zealand derbies, we have arrived at a historic first Super Rugby Aotearoa final.
Remember, last year’s first 100% Kiwi competition didn’t have a decider on its schedule, with the Crusaders ending up taking the top honors with a round to spare.
This time around, the Reds and Blacks will have to return to Sudden Death football if they are to claim even more silverware – aiming for a remarkable fifth Super crown on the trot.
A resurgent Chiefs team, aiming for their first title in eight years, are on their way to top qualifiers to try to stop.
In a stunning turnaround after a record-breaking 11-game losing streak, the Chiefs were property hot as they strung five thrilling wins together to secure their place in the Christchurch final.
While the Crusaders enjoyed a last-round pass last weekend, the Chiefs effectively did too, choosing to rest 11 front rows in their 39-19 loss to the Blues at Eden Park. .
Did it give up their momentum in the big?
Saturday night we will say everything.
Crusaders: Appointed Thursday at 1:45 p.m.
Chiefs: Appointed Thursday, 4:30 p.m.
Assistant referees: TBA
THE WEATHER (from Tuesday PM):
High clouds, some rain possible. Winds from the northeast.
CHANCES (from Tuesday afternoon):
Crusaders $ 1.24, chefs $ 3.70
Chiefs 26 Crusaders 25, Hamilton, April 17, 2021
Crusaders 39 Chiefs 17, Christchurch, March 13, 2021
MAJOR LINES OF HISTORY:
All Black Braydon Ennor enters selection mix for SRA final