Blackadder keeps the faith

Date published: March 13 2013

Despite losing their opening two matches, Crusaders boss Todd Blackadder has named an unchanged starting XV to tackle the Bulls.

Despite losing their opening two Super Rugby matches, Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder has named an unchanged starting XV to tackle the Bulls.

The only change is on the bench, where Tom Taylor's medial ligament injury has ruled him out of this weekend's at AMI Stadium, allowing Tyler Bleyendaal to take his place.

The Crusaders play their first home game of the season against a strong Bulls team who are undefeated thus far and full of confidence following their first ever win over the Blues at Eden Park.

The seven-time Super Rugby champions last met the Bulls in the 2012 qualifying rounds where the Crusaders came out the victors and secured a place in the semi-finals with a 28-13 win.

Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Tom Marshall, 13 Robbie Fruean, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Johnny McNicholl, 10 Dan Carter, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (c), 7 Matt Todd, 6 George Whitelock, 5 Dominic Bird, 4 Sam Whitelock, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Corey Flynn, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Joe Moody, 18 Tom Donnelly, 19 Luke Whitelock, 20 Willi Heinz, 21 Tyler Bleyendaal, 22 Adam Whitelock.

Date: Saturday, March 16
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kick-off: 19:35 (06:35 GMT)
Referee: Chris Pollock (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Kane McBride (New Zealand)
Television match official: Vinny Munro (New Zealand)