Super Rugby: 'Brutal' Lions are a threat - Crusaders coach Scott Robertson

Crusaders coach Scott Robertson is refusing to fall into the trap of underestimating the Lions ahead of their Super Rugby final in Christchurch.

The South Africans beat the Waratahs overnight to setup a rematch of last year's title decider, with many expecting history to repeat itself with another disappointing Lions defeat.

Unlike 12 months ago, the Lions head into the final with seven losses to their name, a stark contrast to their 14-win season in 2017.

Speaking to Andrew Gourdie and Jim Kayes on RadioLIVE, Robertson credited the Lions performance against the Waratahs and expects a tough go of it next Saturday.

"Brutal,” he said. “When they get those strengths - mauls and scrums - going, they're tough.

"It shows they deserve to be in the final, whatever the format or structure. They found a way to get to there and a third in a row, the consistency they've shown deserves to be in the final.

"They get to travel this time, and they'll be just as emotional and passionate around getting their maiden title, so we're going to have to be very good.

"Last year, they played over the top of us. I know it was at altitude and we hung on, but no-one's beaten them in the last 20 minutes of a game in 40 matches.

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"They've always scored more points and they beat us in the last 20 of that final, we just scored more before that fortunately."

It's no secret the Lions will look to overpower the Crusaders up front, as they have done to most teams for the past three seasons.

Robertson singled out hooker Malcom Marx and back-rower Kwagga Smith as the two more dangerous players in their forward pack.

"They've got Kwagga Smith, who could play two games in a row and again at sevens tournaments, and with the amount of turnovers he gets, he's a real threat," he said.

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"You've got Malcom Marx, who is a Mr Olympia next week as well. They've got some threats."

Robertson also confirmed loose forward Jordan Taufua was ruled out of the final with a broken arm, while midfielder Ryan Crotty passed an initial Head Injury Assessment, but had further protocols to come throughout the week.


Join us at 7:30pm Saturday for live updates of the Crusaders vs Lions Super Rugby final.

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