The Crusaders turned on the class in Christchurch to beat the Bulls 28-13 and book their spot in the Super Rugby semifinals.
Both teams opted to build pressure with the ball in hand early on, and it was the Crusaders who got the reward for their impressive ball control in the Bulls' half as Dan Carter slotted two penalties.
The Bulls did themselves no favours with some shaky play in the set-pieces and the home side gladly took advantage when Carter put Zac Guildford through a gaping hole in the Bulls' defensive line on their 22.
The Crusader continued to apply pressure in Bulls territory and Dan Carter extended the lead to 16-0 with a drop-goal off his right boot, although the Bulls did manage to open their account with a Morne Steyn penalty shortly afterwards.
The Bulls started the second half with intent as they desperately tried to get themselves back in the game, but the Crusaders absorbed the pressure well and were able to stretch their lead to 22-3 through two more Carter penalties.
The visitors were finally rewarded for their hard work when Dewald Potgieter was shoved over in the corner after a powerful driving maul.
Another Carter penalty snuffed out any hopes of a late Bulls comeback and although they had the final say through a late try to Wynand Olivier it was little more than a consolation as their campaign came to an end.
More to follow...
For the Crusaders:
Pens: Carter 6
For the Bulls:
Tries: D Potgieter, Olivier
Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Adam Whitelock, 13 Robbie Fruean, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Zac Guildford, 10 Dan Carter, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Richie McCaw (captain), 7 Matt Todd, 6 George Whitelock, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Corey Flynn, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Quentin MacDonald, 17 Ben Franks, 18 Tom Donnelly, 19 Luke Whitelock, 20 Willi Heinz, 21 Tom Taylor, 22 Sean Maitland.
Bulls: 15 Zane Kirchner, 14 Akona Ndungane, 13 JJ Engelbrecht, 12 Wynand Olivier, 11 Bjorn Basson, 10 Morné Steyn, 9 Francois Hougaard, 8 Pierre Spies (captain), 7 Dewald Potgieter, 6 Jacques Potgieter, 5 Juandré Kruger, 4 Flip van der Merwe, 3 Werner Kruger, 2 Chiliboy Ralepelle, 1 Dean Greyling.
Replacements: 16 Willie Wepener, 17 Frik Kirsten, 18 Wilhelm Steenkamp, 19 Deon Stegmann, 20 Jano Vermaak, 21 Louis Fouché, 22 Francois Venter.
Referee: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
Assistant referees: Keith Brown (New Zealand), Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
TMO: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand)