The Hurricanes need ‘multiple threats’ against the Crusaders - Holland

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Hurricanes coach Jason Holland said the Crusaders were still a great side and would be a big challenge for his side.

 

After last week's loss to the Blues, the Hurricanes have returned to the combination of Ngani Laumape and Peter Umaga-Jensen in mid-field because of the attacking mindset they offered. While Billy Proctor had performed well last week, the selection was down to the horses-for-courses approach Holland signalled last week.

 

Umaga-Jensen was a hard player to defend. They wanted to have multiple threats to pressure the Crusaders' defensive line and their decision-making and both Laumape and Umaga-Jensen were capable of winning one-on-one collisions, he said.

 

It would once again be a battle to win the big moments in the game, while also taking points when they were on offer.

 

"She's going to be a massive battle, but we know if we play well and the way we want we can win," he said.

 

 

Holland said coping with yellow cards, and conceding penalties had been an issue addressed earlier in the week in the team's review. They had two yellow cards last week and remedying that had been a major focus during the week.

 

The effect of the penalties was emphasised during one part of last week's game when they 'piggy backed' the Blues down the field when conceding three consecutive penalties.

 

The change in the loose forwards with captain Ardie Savea back at No8 instead of the side of the scrum was driven by the prospect of Savea getting more ball-in-hand opportunities while Du'Plessis Kirifi would be able to play his role as openside flanker. Reed Prinsep, on the blindside of the scrum, had shown his ability to get over the advantage line last week and that would be an asset on Sunday.

 

"It will be a good balance there and hopefully they work in tandem pretty well together," he said.

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