James Mortimer 02.Mar.2013Getty Images
The Crusaders, the last team in Investec Super Rugby to suit up for action in 2013, were in the end outplayed by the resurgent Blues.
It wasn’t a complete disaster for the red and blacks, there was still plenty of typical slow pressure that has become a Crusaders calling card over the years, while there were tactical adjustments throughout the match, notably an attempt to target Chris Noakes on defence.
But they couldn’t survive the Blues onslaught, with the team playing with a verve and confidence that was missing from the players wearing Crusaders jerseys.
Attacking rugby has become part and parcel of Super Rugby, and the Crusaders have clearly realised in the off season that bringing an eighth title back to Christchurch depends on them lifting the lethality of their offensive game.
"We certainly have the players in the squad to play attacking footy and that is what we want to achieve,” Read said.
Next week in Wellington two teams searching for their maiden win of the season will clash, the best offensive outfit of 2011 in the Crusaders against the team that claimed their attacking throne last year in the Hurricanes.
Read promised the Crusaders would not go into their shells.
"We will back ourselves 100 per cent in the way we want to play and will turn up next week and try and do that in Wellington,” he said.