The Crusaders (originally known as the Canterbury Crusaders)
are a New Zealand Rugby Union team based in Christchurch, New
Zealand, Jade Stadium (AMI Stadium), and representing the Nelson
Bays, Marlborough, Buller, West Coast, Canterbury, Mid Canterbury
and South Canterbury unions.
They competed in the Super 14 competition, which they won five of the 10 years in which it was known as the Super 12 (1998, 1999, 2000, 2002, 2005).
In 2002, the Crusaders had a perfect season, winning all 11 games
in the main body of the tournament, and then their semi-final
and the final.
This was their first season under the leadership of Reuben Thorne, who also captained the All Blacks throughout 2002 and 2003. Richie McCaw then assumed the position and captained the team to its fifth Super 12 championship in 2005.
After the Super 12 became the Super 14 the Crusaders continued with their dominance of Southern Hemisphere rugby by winning the inaugaral Super 14. The All Blacks were removed from seven rounds of the Super 14 in 2007 which hurt the Crusaders and they were forced to play the Bulls in Pretoria for the Semi final where the lost and came third.
In 2008 they led the field for most of the tournament but were beaten by the Highlanders in the final round of the round robin matches. They had already secured a home semi and when they beat the Hurricanes they earned a home final where they beat the Waratahs. That was the last match they played under coach Robbie Deans who left to coach Australia's National Rugby team.
The current head coach is a former player and All Black in Todd Blackadder.
Super 15 postions
2012 .. 4th
2011 .. 2nd (Lost to the Reds 18-13 after winning NZ Conference)
Super 14 positions
2010 .. 4th
2009 .. 4th .. (lost to Bulls in Semi)
2008 .. 1st .. (defeated Waratahs in final)
2007 .. 3rd .. (lost to Bulls in Semi)
2006 .. 1st .. (defeated Hurricanes in final 19-12)
Super 12 positions
2005 .. 1st .. (defeated Waratahs in final)
2004 .. 2nd .. (lost final to ACT Brumbies)
2003 .. 2nd .. (lost final to Blues)
2002 .. 1st .. (defeated ACT Brumbies in final)
2001 .. 10th
2000 .. 1st .. (defeated ACT Brumbies in final)
1999 .. 1st .. (defeated Otago Highlanders in final)
1998 .. 1st .. (defeated Auckland Blues in final)
1997 .. 6th
1996 .. 12th