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Live: NSW Waratahs v Crusaders

Super Rugby Waratahs v Crusaders at Allianz Stadium. Waratahs Dean Mumm. Click for more photos

Super Rugby Waratahs v Crusaders at Allianz Stadium

The Crusaders continued their eight year unbeaten run against the gutsy Waratahs with a 37-33 victory at Allianz Stadium. Photos by Steve Christo. Follow us on http://twitter.com/photosSMH Photo: Steve Christo

It is now however.  Willi Heinz turns and drives the ball into touch and that's a four-point win for the Crusaders.  Five, actually, with the four-try bonus point. Waratahs get one themselves for finishing within seven. It was a much-improved effort from the home side tonight but the hoodoo against the Canterbury club remains.  Full-time.  Crusaders 37 Waratahs 33.  That's it from us tonight, thanks for your company and be sure to grab tomorrow's Herald or visit smh.com.au for all the wash-up from Greg Growden and Georgina Robinson.

The Waratahs will move heaven and earth to win this scrum.  Not quite over yet.

Siren has sounded.

79 min: Crusaders smart at the breakdown there.  They'll have the put-in and the ball will be pounded into touch as soon as possible. 

78 min: The home side will have another chance with barely a minute to play.  50m out now.

78 min: Tahs lose the lineout and with it, perhaps, the match. 

77 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs who'll be keen to get us back underway as quickly as possible.  Tahs lineout 40m out.

75 min: Pretorius with the put-in for the Tahs deep inside their own half.  Four minutes to go and the Waratahs are looking at at least one point if the score stays as is.  But that won't be all they're after.

74 min: TRY to the Waratahs.  Great work from Sarel Pretorius who pilfers the ball from the scrum and darts around three defenders to score.  Crusaders still lead 37-33 after Berrick Barnes adds the extras.  Great finish coming up.

71 min: Crusaders have the put-in but there's still plenty of time for both sides.

70 min: Tahs have an attacking lineout in great field position.  Grandstand finish coming up if they can make something of this.  Sekope Kepu off and Polota-Nau returns for the Waratahs.

30,663 on hand at Allianz today.  Crowd no doubt boosted by the visit of some of the great names in world rugby, but surely more Sunday afternoon fixtures is worth considering.

69 min: Penalty successful.  Crusaders lead 39-26 with 10 minutes to play at Allianz Stadium.

67 min: Kieron Read cuts the Waratahs to pieces up the middle before the home side gives away a penalty.  Taylor to take the shot and the Tahs are probably happy to concede three here.  Could easily have been seven and game over.

McKibbin off for Sarel Pretorius.  Great kicking display.

65 min: Another three to the Waratahs halfback and it's 34-26 with 15 minutes to play.  No sign of the fat lady as yet.

64 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs.  McCaw offside in tackling Benn Robinson.  McKibbin will take the shot, nothing wrong with taking the points but they're still eight down if they land this.

62 minute: The Waratahs just beginning to look like putting something together themselves before Rocky Elsom spills it in the centre of the field.  Crusaders looking to extend the lead further.

Crusaders are looking like seven-time champions as they go wide again.  There's a sense of danger every time Robbie Freuan gets near the ball.

57 min: A spectacular kick from Carter and the Waratahs are under pressure again.  Betham driven back beyond his own line before a hospital ball to Berrick Barnes who manages to boot it away.  Sloppy stuff from the home side although the kick was good.

A massive cheer goes up, probably from both sets of fans to be fair, as the great Richie McCaw takes the field.  Even I feel like clapping.

54 min: Another two from Taylor to put the Crusaders ahead 34-23, and that's the bonus point for the fourth try.

53 min: TRY to the Crusaders, and you get the impression the Tahs might just be dropping their bundle a little bit.  Brilliant work from Guildford, Dagg and Freuan who somehow scrambles through a tiny gap near the touchline to run 25m to score.  That's his second for the afternoon and the visitors are up 32-23 with a kick to come.

52 min: And he makes no mistake from 30m out.  Crusaders 27 Waratahs 23

51 min: And it's another PENALTY to the Crusaders.  Taylor to keep the scoreboard ticking over by the looks of it.

McKibbin keeps his perfect record intact and the Waratahs are back within a point. 24-23.

50 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs- not releasing the ball.  McKibbin to take the kick.

TRY awarded.  Crusaders back in front 22-20 with a kick to come.  Some great rugby from both sides but the Crusaders speed out wide looks like it may just have the Waratahs' measure.  Taylor adds the extras and it's 24-20 after 49 minutes.

47 min: Could be a try to the Crusaders here from Samuel Whitelock.  Looks like he got the ball down to me but we'll be going upstairs for a look.  Great leadup work from Kieron Read and this should be five points.

46 min: McKibbin adds the extras to put the Tahs further in front.  20-17.  Another short kick-off from the Crusaders is knocked on.  Michael Foley won't be happy with these gift opportunities.

45 min: TRY. The Tahs look to drive it over the line before a big hole opens up for Wycliff Palu to crash over.  Waratahs back in front 18-17 with a kick to come.  Great forwards try from the home side.

44 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs.  Some good attacking play looks to pay dividends as Robinson eschews the chance to take the three.  Great opportunity here with an attacking lineout barely 10m out from the Crusaders line.

42 min: Better work from Peter Betham this time who is finally brought to ground by three Crusaders

41 min: Tom Taylor adds another three to his tally.  Crusaders 17 Waratahs 13.  Richie McCaw warming up on the sideline.

41 min: PENALTY from the scrum to the Crusaders who'll take the shot at goal.

40 min: The Crusaders try the short kick-off and it comes off as the Waratahs knock it on.  Early attacking opportunity for the visitors.

McKibbin makes it a one-point ball game as we head to half-time.  Crusaders 14 Waratahs 13.  We'll be going for a water break ourselves and will be back in a few minutes with the second half action, plus the half-time assessment from the Herald's Georgina Robinson.  Back soon.

40 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs after the siren.  McKibbin will take the kick.

38 min: The Waratahs will have another chance to take back the lead heading into the break with a minute to play.  Tom Kingston tackled on the 40m line before Tatafu-Polota Nau makes some good metres.  Home side look threatening indeed.

35 min: Two more from Taylor there. Crusaders lead 14-10 and all of a sudden, following a big bust from Robbie Freuan, it's looking like a slightly different ball game.  Spectacular stuff.

33 min: TRY to the Crusaders.  Robbie Freuan is absolutely carving the Tahs up out wide and almost scores himself before giving it back inside to Zac Guildford who scores.  Crusaders 12 Waratahs 10, kick to come

31 min: A bad error from the Tahs' new boy in Peter Betham who spills a very easy ball.  Nerves perhaps?

30 min: McKibbin lands the penalty and it's Waratahs 10 Crusaders 7 as we enter the home stretch of this first half.

29 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs, Read deemed offside, perhaps a touch unfair.  Waratahs to take the gift three points

The Crusaders have donned the black armbands today in remembrance of Sir Fred Allen, former All Black player and coach who passed away this week.  Our condolences to his family and the wider New Zealand rugby community.

27 min: A golden opportunity for the Waratahs with a scrum 20m out from the Crusaders line, another rare error from Kieron Read although, it's happened twice today so perhaps it's not so rare after all.  Great pressure from the Tahs and it won't be letting up just yet

24 min: Adam Ashley-Cooper almost finds another hole before the Crusaders once again turn it over.  Dan Carter goes high but it's straight down the throat of Peter Betham

Still 7-7 at Allianz Stadium after 22 minutes of what has been an engrossing encounter so far.  The Waratahs do seem to find another level of intensity against top-class opposition, and while the Crusaders have had the better of the attacking opportunities it's still anyone's game.

18 min: Crusaders on the attack once more after Berrick Barnes comes off second best to Zac Guildford contesting a high ball from Dan Carter. 

16 min: TRY.  Freuan gets onto a great ball 40m out and crosses all but untouched.  Taylor adds the two and we're all locked up here.  7 apiece.

15 min: Crusaders looking ominous with Tom Taylor almost scoring before McKibbin turns the ball over and finds touch, but the visitors go on the attack again and it's a great TRY to Robbie Fruean

12 min: McKibbin adds the extras and keeps his spectacular record with the boot.  18 from 20 in 2012, and plenty of them have been from the sideline as that one was.  Waratahs 7 Crusaders 0

11 min: TRY.  A great team try as Dave Dennis makes a break before offloading to Kane Douglas who puts Adam Ashley-Cooper into a hole for Atieli Pakalani to score his fourth Super Rugby try in the corner.  Waratahs 5, Crusaders 0, kick to come

10 min: Still 0-0 as the Tahs go on the attack

8 min: The Tahs make a break down the short side through Brendan McKibbin before flicking a pass back inside to Pakalani who can't quite hold onto it

7 min: Waratahs' lineout on their own 22m, great kick there from Corey Flynn.

5 min: PENALTY to the Waratahs who'll have the lineout 10m the Crusaders' side of halfway.

3 min: Crusaders with all the early ball but a rare error from Kieron Read who coughs it up

The Waratahs starting XV: Ashley-Cooper, Atieli Pakalani, Kingston, Carter, Peter Betham, Barnes, McKibbin, Palu, Jenkins, Dennis, Douglas, Mumm, Kepu, Polota-Nau, Robinson

2 min: A rare miss and we're scoreless at Allianz

1 min: PENALTY to the Crusaders.  Great start from both sides, a beautiful counter-attack from Robbie Freuean looked dangerous for the visitors before some hands in the ruck from Dave Dennis could gift the Crusaders an early lead.  They're taking the three.

1 min: Berrick Barnes gets us under way and the Tahs have ended up with possession, good early opportunity.

Teams coming down the tunnel now in front of a healthy crowd as Benn Robinson leads the Tahs onto the turf.  The only man who knows what it's like to beat the Crusaders - captain Rocky Elsom - is on the bench.

Welcome to today's live coverage of the match between the Waratahs and Crusaders on a slightly chilly Sydney afternoon at Allianz Stadium.  It's a rare Sunday fixture for the injury-hit 'Tahs and perhaps they'll be hoping the change of scene can counter their terrible recent record against the Cantabrians - they haven't beaten McCaw's men in eight years - no other Super Rugby side can boast such a dominant record over the Waratahs.

Join the Twitter outlaw, James Polson, for another afternoon belter between the Tahs and Crusaders.

PREVIEW

Last meeting: Round 3 2011 - Crusaders 33 bt Waratahs 18 at Trafalgar Park
Head-to-head: Played 18 Crusaders 14 Waratahs 4
In Sydney: Played 8 Waratahs 3 Crusaders 4
Referee:
Jonathan Kaplan (RSA)

Greg Growden writes: No wonder the Waratahs are edgy in Crusaders week, because their record against them is dreadful. So many Tahs have never experienced triumph against the Super Rugby powerhouse, and that's unlikely to change on a sunny Sunday.

AAP writes: It must be the halfway mark of the season ... the Crusaders are roaring. The seven-time champions were back in their groove against the Hurricanes, whipping up a 32-0 lead in the first half, and they'll like the prospect of an afternoon clash in Sydney. Dan Carter's move to inside centres has payed off, Israel Dagg and Zac Guildford are back hitting gaps, the scrum's demolishing rival packs and Kieran Read is at his peak. And that's not to mention that Richie McCaw will make his return off the bench. The Waratahs have lost key backs Rob Horne and Bernard Foley and will struggle to contain the visitors both out wide and up front.

WARATAHS (from): Adam Ashley-Cooper, Berrick Barnes, Peter Betham, Dave Dennis, Kane Douglas, Tom Carter, Rocky Elsom, Tom Kingston, Daniel Halangahu, Jono Jenkins, Sekope Kepu, Brendan McKibbin, Dean Mumm, Atieli Pakalani, Wycliff Palu, Tatafu Polota-Nau, Sarel Pretorius, Benn Robinson (capt), Jeremy Tilse, Lopeti Timani, Sitaleki Timani, John Ulugia.

CRUSADERS: Israel Dagg, Adam Whitelock, Robbie Fruean, Dan Carter, Zac Guildford, Tom Taylor, Andy Ellis, Kieran Read, Matt Todd, George Whitelock, Luke Romano, Tom Donnelly, Owen Franks, Corey Flynn, Ben Franks. Reserves: Ben Funnell, Wyatt Crockett, Samuel Whitelock, Richie McCaw, Willi Heinz, Ryan Crotty, Tom Marshall.

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Super Rugby 2016

Round 1
Fri, 26 FebTimes shown AEDT
BLU 0vs HIG 0 17:35EP
BRU 0vs HUR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 27 FebTimes shown AEDT
CHT 0vs Jagu 0 04:00FSS
Sunw 0vs LIO 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
CRU 0vs CHF 0 17:35AMI
WAR 0vs RED 0 19:40AS
FOR 0vs REB 0 21:50nib Stadium
Sun, 28 FebTimes shown AEDT
King 0vs SHA 0 00:00NMBS
STO 0vs BUL 0 02:05DHL Newlands
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Round 2
Fri, 04 MarTimes shown AEDT
CRU 0vs BLU 0 17:35AMI
BRU 0vs WAR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 05 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHF 0vs LIO 0 15:15FMG Stadium Waikato
HIG 0vs HUR 0 17:35FBS
RED 0vs FOR 0 19:40SS
Sun, 06 MarTimes shown AEDT
BUL 0vs REB 0 00:00Loftu
CHT 0vs STO 0 02:05FSS
SHA 0vs Jagu 0 04:10GpKP
View All Fixtures
Round 3
Fri, 11 MarTimes shown AEDT
BLU 0vs HUR 0 17:35EP
FOR 0vs BRU 0 22:05nib Stadium
Sat, 12 MarTimes shown AEDT
HIG 0vs LIO 0 17:35FBS
REB 0vs RED 0 19:40AAMI
Sunw 0vs CHT 0 21:50Singapore National Stadium
Sun, 13 MarTimes shown AEDT
King 0vs CHF 0 00:00NMBS
STO 0vs SHA 0 02:05DHL Newlands
View All Fixtures
Round 4
Fri, 18 MarTimes shown AEDT
HUR 0vs FOR 0 17:35Central Energy Trust Arena
WAR 0vs HIG 0 19:40AS
Sat, 19 MarTimes shown AEDT
BUL 0vs SHA 0 04:00Loftu
Sunw 0vs REB 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
CRU 0vs King 0 17:35AMI
RED 0vs BLU 0 19:40SS
Sun, 20 MarTimes shown AEDT
LIO 0vs CHT 0 02:05Emirates Airlines Park
STO 0vs BRU 0 04:10DHL Newlands
Jagu 0vs CHF 0 09:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 5
Fri, 25 MarTimes shown AEDT
HUR 0vs King 0 17:35WS
Sat, 26 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHF 0vs FOR 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
REB 0vs HIG 0 19:40AAMI
Sunw 0vs BUL 0 21:50Singapore National Stadium
Sun, 27 MarTimes shown AEDT
CHT 0vs BRU 0 00:00FSS
SHA 0vs CRU 0 02:05GpKP
Jagu 0vs STO 0 09:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
RED 0vs WAR 0 16:05SS
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Round 6
Fri, 01 AprTimes shown AEDT
HIG 0vs FOR 0 17:35FBS
Sat, 02 AprTimes shown AEDT
LIO 0vs CRU 0 04:00Emirates Airlines Park
BLU 0vs Jagu 0 17:35QBE Stadium
BRU 0vs CHF 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sun, 03 AprTimes shown AEDT
King 0vs Sunw 0 02:05NMBS
BUL 0vs CHT 0 03:10Loftu
WAR 0vs REB 0 16:05AS
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Round 7
Fri, 08 AprTimes shown AEST
CHF 0vs BLU 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
FOR 0vs CRU 0 21:00nib Stadium
Sat, 09 AprTimes shown AEST
STO 0vs Sunw 0 03:00DHL Newlands
HUR 0vs Jagu 0 17:35WS
RED 0vs HIG 0 19:40SS
Sun, 10 AprTimes shown AEST
SHA 0vs LIO 0 01:05GpKP
King 0vs BUL 0 03:10NMBS
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Round 8
Fri, 15 AprTimes shown AEST
CRU 0vs Jagu 0 17:35AMI
REB 0vs HUR 0 19:40AAMI
Sat, 16 AprTimes shown AEST
CHT 0vs Sunw 0 03:00FSS
BLU 0vs SHA 0 17:35EP
WAR 0vs BRU 0 19:40AS
Sun, 17 AprTimes shown AEST
BUL 0vs RED 0 01:05Loftu
LIO 0vs STO 0 03:10Emirates Airlines Park
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Round 9
Fri, 22 AprTimes shown AEST
HIG 0vs SHA 0 17:35FBS
REB 0vs CHT 0 19:40AAMI
Sat, 23 AprTimes shown AEST
Sunw 0vs Jagu 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
HUR 0vs CHF 0 17:35WS
FOR 0vs WAR 0 19:40nib Stadium
STO 0vs RED 0 23:00DHL Newlands
Sun, 24 AprTimes shown AEST
King 0vs LIO 0 01:05NMBS
BRU 0vs CRU 0 16:05GIO Stadium
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Round 10
Fri, 29 AprTimes shown AEST
CHF 0vs SHA 0 17:35Yarro
FOR 0vs BUL 0 21:05nib Stadium
Sat, 30 AprTimes shown AEST
HIG 0vs BRU 0 15:15Rugby Park
BLU 0vs REB 0 17:35EP
RED 0vs CHT 0 19:40SS
Sun, 01 MayTimes shown AEST
LIO 0vs HUR 0 01:05Emirates Airlines Park
STO 0vs WAR 0 03:10DHL Newlands
Jagu 0vs King 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 11
Fri, 06 MayTimes shown AEST
CRU 0vs RED 0 17:35AMI
BRU 0vs BUL 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 07 MayTimes shown AEST
Sunw 0vs FOR 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
CHF 0vs HIG 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
WAR 0vs CHT 0 19:40AS
SHA 0vs HUR 0 23:00GpKP
Sun, 08 MayTimes shown AEST
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Round 12
Fri, 13 MayTimes shown AEST
HIG 0vs CRU 0 17:35FBS
REB 0vs BRU 0 19:40AAMI
Sat, 14 MayTimes shown AEST
HUR 0vs RED 0 17:35WS
WAR 0vs BUL 0 19:40AS
Sunw 0vs STO 0 21:45Singapore National Stadium
Sun, 15 MayTimes shown AEST
CHT 0vs King 0 01:05FSS
LIO 0vs BLU 0 03:10Emirates Airlines Park
Jagu 0vs SHA 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 13
Fri, 20 MayTimes shown AEST
CRU 0vs WAR 0 17:35AMI
Sat, 21 MayTimes shown AEST
RED 0vs Sunw 0 15:05SS
CHF 0vs REB 0 17:35FMG Stadium Waikato
FOR 0vs BLU 0 19:40nib Stadium
LIO 0vs Jagu 0 23:00Emirates Airlines Park
Sun, 22 MayTimes shown AEST
SHA 0vs King 0 01:05GpKP
BUL 0vs STO 0 03:10Loftu
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Round 14
Fri, 27 MayTimes shown AEST
HUR 0vs HIG 0 17:35WS
WAR 0vs CHF 0 19:40AS
Sat, 28 MayTimes shown AEST
King 0vs Jagu 0 03:00NMBS
BLU 0vs CRU 0 17:35EP
BRU 0vs Sunw 0 19:40GIO Stadium
STO 0vs CHT 0 23:00DHL Newlands
Sun, 29 MayTimes shown AEST
BUL 0vs LIO 0 01:05Loftu
REB 0vs FOR 0 16:05AAMI
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Fri, 01 JulTimes shown AEST
CHF 0vs CRU 0 17:35ANZ National Stadium, Suva
BRU 0vs RED 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sat, 02 JulTimes shown AEST
Sunw 0vs WAR 0 15:15Prince Chichibu Memorial Stadium
HUR 0vs BLU 0 17:35WS
REB 0vs STO 0 19:40AAMI
CHT 0vs FOR 0 23:00FSS
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King 0vs HIG 0 03:10NMBS
Jagu 0vs BUL 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 16
Fri, 08 JulTimes shown AEST
BLU 0vs BRU 0 17:35EP
RED 0vs CHF 0 19:40SS
Sat, 09 JulTimes shown AEST
LIO 0vs King 0 03:00Emirates Airlines Park
CRU 0vs REB 0 17:35AMI
WAR 0vs HUR 0 19:40AS
FOR 0vs STO 0 21:45nib Stadium
Sun, 10 JulTimes shown AEST
BUL 0vs Sunw 0 01:05Loftu
SHA 0vs CHT 0 03:10GpKP
Jagu 0vs HIG 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 17
Fri, 15 JulTimes shown AEST
BLU 0vs WAR 0 17:35EP
RED 0vs REB 0 19:40SS
Sat, 16 JulTimes shown AEST
SHA 0vs Sunw 0 03:00GpKP
CRU 0vs HUR 0 15:15AMI
HIG 0vs CHF 0 17:35FBS
BRU 0vs FOR 0 19:40GIO Stadium
Sun, 17 JulTimes shown AEST
STO 0vs King 0 01:05DHL Newlands
CHT 0vs BUL 0 03:10FSS
Jagu 0vs LIO 0 07:00Estadio Jose Amalfitani
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Round 18
Fri, 22 JulTimes shown AEST
TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
Sat, 23 JulTimes shown AEST
TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
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Fri, 29 JulTimes shown AEST
TBC 0vs TBC 0 09:00
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Super Rugby Grand Final
Sat, 06 AugTimes shown AEST
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Team P W L D +/- Pts
Blues 0 0 0 0 0 0
Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0 0
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Super Rugby 2016
Overall standings
Team P W L D +/- Pts
Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0 0
Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0 0
Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0 0
Force 0 0 0 0 0 0
Highlanders 0 0 0 0 0 0
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0 0
Rebels 0 0 0 0 0 0
Reds 0 0 0 0 0 0
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