Hurricanes ride high in rankings

26/04/2003 07:42:10 PM Comments (0)

The Hurricanes' rabid approach to rucks has yielded them more turnovers than any other team in the the Super 12 rugby competition.

Loose forwards Rodney So'ialo and Kupu Vanisi, in particular, are forcing the opposition to cough up the ball 18 times a match, rugby analyst Nik Rutherford reports.

The Brumbies might have been fourth going into this weekend's rounds of games but, surprisingly, with flanker George Smith on board, they are last with 13.1 turnovers forced per game.

The Hurricanes always get their man and that's a big reason why they also top the Super 12 in tackling.

So far they have made 91.1 percent of their tackles, good enough for first place ahead of the Brumbies and Crusaders.

Despite playing an expansive game, the Hurricanes make only 10.1 handling errors per game and that, too, is the best in the Super 12.

Australian sides have had the most difficulty hanging on to the ball in 2003, with the Waratahs and Brumbies ranking 11th and 12th.

The Hurricanes were previously a joke when it came to their discipline.

This year under coach Colin Cooper, they have improved out of sight, although their ranking in penalties and free kicks conceded is slightly deceiving because they are second equal with the Brumbies and Reds at 12.4 per match.

The Bulls are the most penalised side in the competition.

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