Revitalised Eastern Suburbs are crusading into the finals 

By Jon Geddes AFTER a nightmare start to the season losing seven of their first nine games, Eastern Suburbs has emerged as a real premiership contender thanks to a shot of Crusaders’ DNA.   The Beasties’ Kiwi head coach Simon Kneebone arrived at Woollahra Oval this season after previous roles as head forwards coach at the Crusaders Academy and head coach of the Canterbury 19s, which is a high-performance unit for the New Zealand Under 20s.         While there was an adjustment period for everyone involved, Kneebone’s new coaching regime - off the back of his experience at the world rugby powerhouse - started to pay dividends towards the end of the premiership rounds. The upshot is that Easts will take on Eastwood in what is shaping up as a massive sudden death quarter-final on Saturday at Eric Tweedale Stadium. “One of the philosophies that I have in this team, and the team really relishes, is that we ask them to express themselves,” Kneebone told Rugby News.
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