Hurricanes aim for better start

Getty Images

Lynn McConnell     26 Mar 2019     Getty Images

Assistant coach Jason Holland said that was what they didn't do in their first game against the Crusaders in Christchurch and by starting well and owning some territory early in the game it would help them get into the game.

The fact it was a game with the side they shared the top of the table with did not really add to the pressure.

Any local derby was a challenge but the fact it was long-time rival the Crusaders ensured it was a game the players got excited about, he said.

With All Blacks rest demands settled for the moment, the Hurricanes would be as full strength as they could be so they were looking forward to getting into the game, he said.

The Hurricanes would look to build on the lessons learned from their win over the Stormers on Friday.

"They had us under pressure around their lineout drive and sheer size of them. We've had a look at ways to defend their drives, I'm sure we're going to get a few more from the Crusaders," he said.

They were excited about meeting the Crusaders and they were expecting plenty from their pack and were looking at ways to negate that and play to their own strengths.

Having seen the Crusaders' winning streak brought to an end at the weekend, Holland said it was the Waratahs' physicality that had been impressive in their win.

"They were hard out, they were into rucks, they were into contestable kicks and winning those 50/50s they're like any team, you put pressure on them and you win those 50/50s she's a different game," he said.

Wanting to make better use of the ball, firstly by holding onto it for longer, but also getting impetus over the advantage line would be important, because that was what the Crusaders were so good at in their own game.

With Ngani Laumape returning from his rest week it was unlikely Jordie Barrett, who had a strong game in the position against the Stormers, would be seen in that role against the Crusaders but he would be on the park and used in a different way, he said.