Crusaders reach final

Reds clash awaits seven-time champions

Last Updated: 02/07/11 7:06pm

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Fruean: Scored second try for Crusaders

Fruean: Scored second try for Crusaders

Sky Bet

Canterbury Crusaders powered past the Stormers 29-10 to set up a Super Rugby final against Queensland Reds.

New Zealand's seven-time champions dominated their hosts to become the first side to win a Super Rugby semi-final on foreign soil since 1999.

Tries from winger Sean Maitland and centre Robbie Fruean, plus 19 points from the boot of Daniel Carter, sealed victory in Cape Town.

Bryan Habana went over for the Stormers' only try just before half-time, but the South African outfit could not reach a second straight final after an impressive performance from the Crusaders.

It means the Christchurch-based club qualified for an incredible tenth final in 14 seasons - even after an earthquake devastated their home city in the first week of the competition.

The disaster forced them to move to five separate venues - including one in a different hemisphere - for their home games.

Now they have the chance to cap an emotional campaign with an eighth title triumph in 16 professional seasons of Super Rugby.

Control

The Crusaders were on top almost from start to finish, producing an all-around show that underlined their status as the competition's most successful team.

Even a 15-hour 7,000-mile journey to South Africa, where they had lost three semi-finals in the last four seasons, could not wear them down.

The Stormers lost scrum half Dewaldt Duvenage to injury before kick-off and captain Schalk Burger at half time after he broke a thumb.

But the 2010 runners-up were hampered, more than anything, by a shaky, ill-disciplined performance under immense pressure from the visitors.

Stormers fly half Peter Grant nudged over a penalty in the seventh minute for an early lead for the home team.

Crusaders levelled with Carter's first shot and Maitland stunned the home crowd a minute later with a 50-metre break after intercepting a loose pass from Nick Koster.

Three more kicks from Carter opened a commanding 16-3 lead after 24 minutes for the ruthless visitors, before Fruean skipped clear of the home defence to score another try.

Turning down kicks at goal in search of a try, the Stormers crossed in the 39th minute when Habana forced his way home and Grant's conversion for 23-10 gave them a glimmer of hope at half time.

But it mattered little as Carter landed two more penalties after the break to complete a dominant display.

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