Crusaders claim top position in New Zealand Conference with 14-40 win over Jaguares

Crusaders are on a three-game winning streak
Crusaders are on a three-game winning streak
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Jaguares 14 - 40 Crusaders, Estadio Jose Amalfitani

The defending champions Crusaders have claimed the top position in New Zealand Conference following a 14-40 bonus point win over Jaguares in their Super Rugby clash at Estadio Jose Amalfitani.

Winger George Bridge gave early momentum to the Crusaders with his tries in the fifth and 13th minutes with fly-half Mitch Hunt kicking a conversion to take them to a 12 point lead.

The lead soon swelled to 0-19 after Codie Taylor offloaded to winger Manasa Mataele in the 32nd minute as he went past the line while Hunt improved it. Things could have been even worse for Jaguares before the break but Codie Taylor knocked-on denying Ryan Crotty a try.

Trailing by 19 points, Jaguares finally showed some intent after the break as fullback Joaquin Tuculet dotted down in the 44th minute and Nicolas Sanchez slotted the conversion. But, his efforts were negated after a Mataele break down on the right wing set up a converted try for Hunt as the scoreline became 7-26 but Jaguares hopes were reignited with Emiliano Boffelli's try coming two minutes later.

As the final quarter kicked-in, Crusaders had a 12 point lead and they ensured there was no looking back with Crotty (66') and Mataele (68') scoring further tries to complete a comfortable 14-40 victory.

Crusaders with 24 points are at top of New Zealand Conference while Jaguares are at bottom of South African Conference with eight points.

Super Rugby 2018 Points Table