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Crusaders keep playoff hopes alive with rousing win over Blues

In a nail-biting encounter, the Crusaders eked out a vital 29-27 win against their arch-rivals, the Blues, in Christchurch, keeping their slim playoff aspirations intact.

The match was a testament to the Crusaders’ guts with Noah Hotham scoring the crucial try that decided the game’s outcome.

The defending champions, who have struggled throughout the season to close out games, showed improved composure under pressure. Post-game, Hotham praised the significance of the victory and thanked the team’s supporters for sticking with them through a challenging season.

Despite the loss the Blues managed to secure a bonus point which propelled them back to the top of the Super Rugby Pacific table, although the defeat in Christchurch—continuing a long-standing trend—was a tough pill to swallow.

Blues’ Patrick Tuipolotu lamented his team’s ill-discipline, which has been a recurring issue.

Looking ahead, the Blues face a demanding schedule, including a matchup against the Chiefs, who are also looking to rebound from a recent loss.

Meanwhile, Crusaders’ captain Codie Taylor revealed that a motivational gathering with past Crusaders legends earlier in the week played a crucial role in inspiring their performance, highlighting the team’s determination to leverage every remaining opportunity to make the playoffs.

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