Blues coach Leon MacDonald takes no pleasure in Crusaders’ remaining miss

The Blues will play of their first Tremendous Rugby remaining in 17 years this coming weekend after they face the Highlanders within the Trans-Tasman Grand Closing.

Their 31:21 win over the Western Pressure on Saturday evening was sufficient to propel them to the highest of the desk, regardless of New Zealand’s 4 different franchises additionally taking wins in opposition to their Australian competitors within the finals.

It could not have been essentially the most complete of all victories as he constructed a 28-0 lead at halftime however weakened as the sport progressed, however coach Leon MacDonald shall be assured his squad can have sufficient firepower to tackle the hovering Highlanders defeat a mammoth harm listing.

That being stated, the Blues have not had the simplest instances in opposition to the southerners this yr. They triumphed of their first sport at Eden Park however have been effectively represented at Dunedin of their most up-to-date sport.

Nonetheless, it’s going to possible be simpler to navigate the ocean than if the Crusaders scored one additional attempt of their victory over the Rebels – which might have given them internet hosting rights for the finals quite than ending third.

After the win, Leon MacDonald urged {that a} Tremendous Rugby remaining and not using a Crusader – the primary since 2016 – won’t be the worst for rugby in New Zealand.

“I believe it is nice,” he stated. “There are two groups that actually imagine they’ll win a title … the Highlanders will assist their possibilities too. Is it good for New Zealand rugby? I believe it is a fantastic factor for the blues. We’re fairly excited in regards to the alternative that presents itself. “

Nevertheless, after enjoying 122 matches for the Crusaders when he was younger, the story would have taken a flip if MacDonald’s Blues needed to journey to Christchurch to wrest a trophy from his former group.

Since MacDonald took over as head coach in 2019, the Blues have but to say a win over the Crusaders – the group they beat within the grand finale the final time they received a brilliant title.

In reality, it has been seven years since their final win over the pink and black machine, which might have made it very troublesome if the Crusaders had booked a spot within the final sport of the season.

Nonetheless, MacDonald stated he was not “relieved” that his protégés wouldn’t tackle the crusaders subsequent weekend.

“I do not understand how I felt [the Crusaders missing out]”He stated.” In case you sit there and take into consideration the proper state of affairs, defeating the Crusaders at house could be magical. However enjoying the Highlanders goes to be a fantastic sport too. They’re going to make good use of the ball and play nice rugby .

“That was no reduction in any respect. It was an ‘OK, now we all know what to do’ and that was extra necessary. “

Whereas the Blues have received extra Tremendous Rugby titles than the Highlanders within the competitors’s 26-year historical past and three within the competitors’s 26-year historical past, the Southerners have had more moderen wins, beating the Hurricanes in Wellington in 2015.

Your kind over the previous few weeks means MacDonald and the Blues shall be ready for an enormous problem on Saturday evening.

“You should be there,” he stated. “They’ve persistently been doing their factor within the background all through the event and have simply gotten higher and higher till they pose a terrifying risk.”

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