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Future Tiger Taufua crowned Super champion

Jordan Taufua has signed off from Super Rugby in fairytale fashion as the future Tiger came off the bench to feature in a third straight title win for the Crusaders when they defeated the Jaguares 19-3 in Christchurch on Saturday.

The back-rower was injected in to the game in the 53rd minute and carried on five occasions in the final half hour, while also adding intensity and energy to the New Zealand side's defence to help close out the match.

The win sees the Crusaders become the first side in Super Rugby history to achieve ten title wins, seven clear of the equal next best in the Bulls and Blues with three each.

The victory also takes the Canterbury team to three titles since the competition adopted the name of Super Rugby in 2011 after achieving five in the Super 12 and two in the Super 12 eras.

On the opposite side of the park was Taufua's future Tigers team-mate Tomas Lavanini, who played 63 minutes for the Jaguares after starting at lock and once again showed why he is considered one of world rugby's fiercest defenders with his trademark, tireless tackling on show.

Lavanini will now link up with the Argentina national side ahead of their opening Rugby Championship fixture of the 2019 season against the All Blacks in Buenos Aires on July 20, while Taufua was not named in the New Zealand squad but remains in contention for both the Kiwi and Samoa squads for the World Cup in Japan due to eligibility for both nations.

The pair will link up with their Leicester team-mates once their respective commitments to national squads, if included, are completed in 2019 and arrive in the East Midlands during the opening weeks of the 2019/20 Premiership Rugby season.