Crusaders 17-13 Brumbies, AMI Stadium
Crusaders kick started their Super Rugby 2017 season with a close 17-13 victory over Brumbies at AMI Stadium on Saturday.
Wing Seta Tamanivalu got the hosts off the mark with a third minute try followed by a conversion from fly-half Richie Mo'unga.
Brumbies made a brief comeback when fly-half Wharenui Hawera scored a penalty in the 12th minute but they suffered a setback when wing James Dargaville was sin-binned in the 23rd minute which was capitalised by number eight Whetu Douglas, when he strolled past the post in the 32nd minute as Crusaders ended the first half with a nine-point lead.
The visitors hopes raised when Rory Arnold scored a try at the start of the second half and the gap was down to two points after Hawera added the extras.
Flanker Peter Samu provided Crusaders some breathing space when he went past the line in the 55th minute but Hawera again cut down the trail to four points with his second penalty.
As the game was heading for a tight finish, Crusaders managed to held their nerve and completed a close four point win.