The Hurricanes and Crusaders continued their fight for pole position, the Highlanders and Chiefs picked up crucial wins, the Sharks and Bulls continued to hunt down the Lions, and the Sunwolves produced their best performance of the year. These are your Super Rugby Power Rankings – Week 13.

1. Hurricanes

The clinical Canes were too much for their Auckland rivals, displaying a workmanlike performance at Eden Park. They never really looked like losing the match and once Perenara came on, the Blues were never going to get across the line.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

2. Crusaders

They survived a massive scare against the Waratahs after giving up an early 29 points in the first half. Thankfully there was no panic in the Crusaders camp and they were able to claw their way back for the win. Discipline remains a problem for the Cantabs and they will be looking to shore that up heading into the business end of the competition.

3. Highlanders

The Highlanders returned to winning ways after outgunning the Lions at home. They looked full of energy from the outset and were able to get on top early before a late first-half comeback brought the Lions back into the match. The Highlanders will be happy with the fact that they were able to close out the match and put much need points on the board after that scrappy performance last week.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

4. Chiefs

The Chiefs notched a vital away win and kept their conference chances alive with a gutsy win in Cape Town. They have battled hard this year and once again showed their ability to scrap their way to a win. The challenge for them now is to do it all again in Durban, against the Sharks and without All Blacks Brodie Rettalick, Nathan Harris, Damian McKenzie, Sam Cane and Anton Leinert Brown who have returned to New Zealand for All Black commitments.

5. Lions

The Lions stayed hungry in Dunedin and were in the hunt until the final stages of their match against the Highlanders. Ultimately their efforts fell short and they will head back to South Africa on the back of a three-match losing streak. It somewhat makes a mockery of Super Rugby when they still find themselves second on the overall standings.

6. Jaguares

A bye hasn’t done any damage to the Jaguares and they stay in 6th spot on the Power Rankings.

7. Bulls

The Bulls kept their playoff hopes alive with an intense victory over the Sharks at Loftus, eventually prevailing 39-33. That puts them on equal points with the Sharks heading into week 14 and it sets up an exciting run home in the South African conference.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

8. Sharks

A win at Loftus would have propelled the Sharks into conference leading contention, however, a quick start by the Bulls proved too much for the Durban based outfit. An under-strength Chiefs side come to town this week and the Sharks will know full well that maximum points are there for the taking, all they have to do is execute.

9. Waratahs

The Tahs blew the ultimate opportunity of ending New Zealand’s dominance over their Australian counterparts. Their 29-0 opening blitz wasn’t enough to get over the line in Christchurch. Daryll Gibson added to their wounds, arguing that his men were dealt a harsh blow after Joe Moody’s elbow on Kurtley Beale went unnoticed. (See 2.45 mins below)

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

10. Rebels

A crucial win in Canberra has etched the Melbourne side closer to Australian supremacy. They are chasing the Waratahs however and will be keen to keep their momentum going into the closing stages of this competition.

11. Stormers

The Stormers suffered their first home loss of 2018, a result that has seen them fall off the pace in the South African conference. They will need to win almost all their remaining matches to have any chance of securing a playoff berth.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

12. Brumbies

The Brumbies blew a big advantage before succumbing to the Rebels second-half rally of points. Their lack of depth showed in this match and desperately reflected the need for Australian rugby to return back to the three-team representation, where they were most successful.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

13. Blues

It was all too familiar on Friday night as the Blues once again fell off the pace in a Kiwi derby. The Canes had too much firepower in the end and once again brought the Blues back down to earth. Another hefty clash against the Crusaders provides this team with another opportunity to grow.

14. Sunwolves

The Sunwolves showed a touch of heart in Tokyo over the weekend giving the Reds an old-fashioned lesson that Brad Thorn was not happy with. After all the maulings they have received this year you could have forgiven the Sunwolves for turning up a little stiff. However, as traditionally seen in Japanese culture, they seem to never give up and a performance like that will boost their confidence moving forward.

Source: Super Rugby TV – YouTube

15. Reds

Conceding 60+ points against the Sunwolves has to be one of their worst in history. With the Hurricanes next on their agenda, they could very well end up staring down the barrel of a 100 point hiding. Expect a better performance by Thorn’s men as they limp towards New Zealand’s Capital.


Author: Simon van Ryn

I am a sports mad fanatic who loves watching drama filled code. Growing up in Wellington I have been fortunate enough to witness some great sporting moments at the Cake Tin – non more satisfying than seeing my beloved Hurricanes finally lift that trophy after 21 years of hurt.


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