The end of the world? Our beloved Crusaders miss the final series (first time since 2001)

I can already hear the screams up here in Nelson!

  • ‘Toddy must go!’
  • ‘Our guys are too old!’
  • ‘Our tactics are too predictable’
  • ‘Why isn’t Carter playing at 10?’
  • ‘We’ve never been the same since the earthquakes!’
  • ‘We’ve never been right since we moved to Addington’
  • ‘Our recruitment is all wrong (especially the backs)’

bollocks

What a load of bollocks!

Don’t get me wrong – my blood runs black and red – as much as anyone’s within the franchise. And, as much as I am in dire pain this morning – my wounds aren’t mortal and neither is the future of the Crusaders.

crusaders horse

Take a good hard look at the following stats – take careful note of the first and last 4 years particularly.

End of Season standings

Super 12 Super 14 Super Rugby
Season Pos Pld W D L F A +/- BP Pts Notes
1996 12th 11 2 1 8 234 378 -144 3 13
1997 6th 11 5 1 5 272 235 +37 4 26
1998 1st 11 8 0 3 340 260 +80 9 41 (defeated Blues in final)
1999 1st 11 7 1 3 324 262 +62 3 33 (defeated Highlanders in final)
2000 1st 11 8 0 3 369 293 +76 7 39 (defeated Brumbies in final)
2001 10th 11 4 0 7 307 331 -24 7 23
2002 1st 11 11 0 0 469 264 +205 7 51 (defeated Brumbies in final)
2003 2nd 11 8 0 3 358 263 +95 8 40 (lost final to Blues)
2004 2nd 11 7 0 4 345 303 +42 6 34 (lost final to Brumbies)
2005 1st 11 9 0 2 459 281 +178 8 44 (defeated Waratahs in final)
2006 1st 13 11 1 1 412 210 +202 5 51 (Defeated the Hurricanes in final)
2007 3rd 13 8 0 5 382 235 +147 10 42 (Lost to the Bulls in semi-final)
2008 1st 13 11 0 2 369 176 +193 8 52 (defeated Waratahs in final)
2009 4th 13 8 1 4 231 198 +33 7 41 (Lost to the Bulls in semi-final)
2010 4th 13 8 1 4 388 295 +93 7 41 (Lost to the Bulls in semi-final)
2011 2nd 16 11 1 4 436 273 +163 7 65 (Lost to the Reds in final)
2012 4th 16 11 0 5 485 343 +142 9 61 (Lost to the Chiefs in semi-final)
2013 4th 16 11 0 5 446 307 +139 8 60 (Lost to the Chiefs in semi-final)
2014 2nd 16 11 0 5 445 322 +123 9 51 (Lost to the Waratahs in final)

trophy

These stats are the reason the Crusaders are considered the best professional team in world rugby. These are the stats why the Crusaders are recognised as one of the worlds best professional sports franchise – period!

So before we go off and slash our wrists after last night – let’s reflect on the following:

  • No team can stay on the top forever – is missing one finals series in 10 bad? (90% success rate)
  • Look at the demise of Man U – it is impossible for any team to stay on top forever
  • Let’s celebrate the success of our fellow NZ Franchises (The Chiefs The Highlanders and my other favourite’s the Hurricanes) and the style of rugby they are playing. Ask each one of these franchises on who they model themselves on (both on and off the pitch) and the answer is the Crusaders. Surely this is the greatest compliment one can be paid – surely we are a victim off our own success!
  • At least we are not the blues!

After last night I’m in pain – but I’m also in awe, because for so many years we have expected so much from our team and up until now they have always delivered. And, in my mind there is no reason why this wont continue for many more years to come. We may need to make a few tweaks – we might need to slightly adjust some aspects – but there is no need for wholesale doom and gloom.

Here’s my idea’s:

  • Coaching – Matson and Mauger to be replaced with W Smith
  • Recruit – first five
  • Recruit Hooker
  • Recruit a 12

Keep the faith and believe – next year we will be back!

crusaders horse 2

I hope you all feel the same way – after all our blood runs black and red!

Kia Ora – Roly

Please share or comment if you like (or don’t)! How would you get the Crusaders back to the top?

One thought on “The end of the world? Our beloved Crusaders miss the final series (first time since 2001)

  1. Pingback: The end of the world? Our beloved Crusaders miss the final series (first time since 2001) « Roly Andrews Author

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