The country of New Zealand consists of two main islands, the North Island and the South Island. The South Island is larger amongst the two islands but is however less populous than the North Island. Although the South Island is called the Mainland, merely a quarter of the total population of New Zealand inhabit this place. South island rose into prominence primarily through the gold rush period when the majority of the European settlers focused on this area as their primary area of settlement.
Sports play an exceptionally dominant role within the South Islanders way of life. Some of the most popular sports in this area are rugby, cricket and netball. The most popular sport in South Island is Rugby and this sport is additionally the national sport. Some of the other sports that enjoy some level of popularity in this region are Ice Hockey, basketball and football.
The South Island has separate teams that take part in Rugby League and Rugby Union matches. Their team that participates in the Rugby League matches is known as the Canterbury Bulls. This team is based out of the largest city in South Island called Christchurch and have been in the sports news for winning several Bartercard Cups.
There are a number of teams in South Island that play the Rugby Union Matches. The Crusaders, the Canterbury Rugby Football Union, Southland Stags, the Highlanders, Tasman Makos, Buller, Mid Canterbury, South Canterbury, West Coast Rugby Football Union and North Otago are the popular teams that play rugby union matches.
Amongst all the teams that play rugby union, it is the Crusaders who love to be the most successful. Based out of Christchurch, this team was formerly called the Canterbury Crusaders and participates in the Super 14 championships. This team is also considered to be one of the most successful teams in the history of Super Rugby. This franchisee also represents the provincial rugby union teams such as Mid Canterbury, South Canterbury, Buller, West Coast Rugby Football Union and Tasman Makos.
The Crusaders were formed in 1996 so as to represent South Island in the Super 12matches. This team had a dismal start and finished within the last spot in its first season. Their upswing began from 1998 from where they continued a fantastic spree. They have been consistent winners and have won five Super 12 trophies. With their fifth win, the Crusaders were also given the Super 12 trophy for keeps.
Following the Super 12 victories, the Crusaders have been playing the Super 14 since its inauguration in 2006. They have already claimed two victories in both the Super 14 seasons taking their amount of title wins to seven.
Apart from being in the news because of their fantastic winning records, this team from South Island also holds several records. The main of those competition records being the top number of points scored in a game and the most number of tries in a game. Along with this all time high also comes a record of the all time low competition record where the Crusaders scored the lowest number of points in the game up against the Otago Highlanders.