The round started off with a NZ derby which saw the Highlanders host the defending champions Chiefs, and this match was one you wouldn’t have wanted to miss, Quality champagne rugby coming from both ends made this one of the more enjoyable Super Rugby games I can remember, and a great way to kick off the week. the final score Highlanders 27-41 Chiefs.
We then were treated… I guess, to an Aussie derby which saw the Brumbies make the trip to Melbourne to take on the Rebels in a match that started competitive, but as it went on the Brumbies started to dominate and came out with a 13-30 bonus point win.
It was then South Africa’s turn in this years competition, and the SA conference started with a titanic clash between the Bulls and Stormers where everything was left out on the field, and while in mid season when teams have started to play their best rugby we might have seen Stormers come out with the win in this one, in the opening week it was the Bulls who came out 25-17 winners.
Onto Saturday when the much fancied Hurricanes took to the field against the expected bottom dwellers Blues we saw our first real upset with the Blues defying the odds and coming out 20-34 winners in another exciting NZ derby.
The Reds then hosted the Waratahs and rushed to a lead of 14 points, and while the Tahs fought back in the 2nd half, the 1st half deficit proved a bridge to far to overcome as Reds came out 25-17 victors.
Back to the SA teams now when the Cheetahs played host to the Sharks and almost managed to pull of a huge upset against the title contenders, but fell just short as Sharks came out winners 22-29
For the final and most talked about game of the weekend we had the Western Force make the overseas trip in the first clash between different conferences when they took on the Southern Kings who were making their Super Rugby debut. Going into the match no-one gave the Kings a chance, even I, a massive Kings supporter didn’t see any hope for them, but how glad I am that they proved me wrong. The Southern Kings winning the match 22-10 conceding no points in the 2nd half testament to their fine defence and determination, in front of a 32 000+ crowd showing everyone that they are not just here to fill the numbers, but they are here to compete. I was fortunate enough to be a part of that crowd, and the vibe was indescribable. It will definitely be something I will remember till I die.
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