Hurricanes just too good, claim 2016 Super Rugby title

Hurricanes - FT Final

Hurricanes' skipper Dane Coles holds aloft the brand new Super Rugby cup...

Hurricanes’ skipper Dane Coles holds aloft the brand new Super Rugby cup…

They’ve done it. And they haven’t conceded a try now in three and half games. The Hurricanes’ phenomenal rush defence has delivered them a maiden Super Rugby title, beating the Lions 20-3 in wet and windy Wellington last night.

Tries to Cory Jane and Beauden Barrett either side of half time, and a flawless kicking display from Barrett (shanked drop goal attempt with penalty advantage aside) was the difference between the two sides, in front a heaving capacity crowd at the ‘Cake tin’.

The Hurricanes become the fifth and final New Zealand side to take the title, and the ninth overall Super Rugby Champion..

The talking points: Super Rugby final

The Roar: Hurricanes versus Lions. Meteorological phenomena versus the kings of the jungle. Something that will mess up your hair versus something that will bite your hair clean off (and probably a bit more). Other head-to-head analogies that don’t really make sense.

In Super Rugby, it’s the best two teams of 2016 facing off to be crowned the ninth overall Champion in the competition’s twenty-year history. And it’s going to be a cracker…

  • The wall of wind versus the attack of the ultimate predator;
  • The pressure is on the Hurricanes. But that’s not a bad thing;
  • Boyd versus Ackermann for Coach of the Year?
  • Could another unsung hero step up?
  • A different kind of start for 2017

The Lions: worthy African finalists

The Roar: Amid all the talk over the weekend around the finals format, and particularly how the 2016 format gives the South African teams a rails run, one little detail was consistently overlooked.

The Lions will earn a playoffs spot on pure performance, not charity. And further, they will take some beating.

Second on the Super Rugby table heading into the recess – and second however you want to frame it; outright, or by conference format – the Lions have one hand on the Africa 2 conference title already, and they can wrap that up properly with a win over the Sharks in Round 15 when the competition resumes.