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The Crusaders from New Zealand won their eighth Super Rugby title, defeating the Lions from South Africa 25-17 in Ellis Park, Johannesburg. It marked the first ANZAC Super Rugby final victory played away in South Africa.
The game will be remembered for the red-card issued at the 38th-minute when the Lions Kwagga Smith dangerously tackled the Crusaders David Havili in the air. From that moment, the Lions were down to 14 men for the rest of the match.
The Crusaders lost in the finals in 2011 and 2014, after scoring seven wins early in the formation of the League.
The New Zealanders were up 25-3 before the Lions squad roared back with 14-points despite being down a man.
The red card marked the second time this summer that a serious rules infraction merited the expulsion of a player. Before, Sonny Bill Williams, had been red-carded for his shoulder charge tackle in the match between the All Blacks and the British and Irish Lions. That game ended in a tie result.
The Laws of Rugby are precise, fair, and reasonable. When a dangerous move occurs on the pitch, the referee is bound to produce the red card.