Carter on bench as Franks hits 100

Date published: April 9 2015

The Crusaders have left both Dan Carter and Richie McCaw on the bench for Saturday's Super Rugby clash with the Highlanders in Christchurch.

Head coach Todd Blackadder has named an unchanged backline after last week's impressive win over the Sharks in Durban but there are three changes to the pack.

Joe Moody and Owen Franks are the starting props this week while Alex Hodgman and Nepo Laulala provide cover from the bench. Wyatt Crockett is given a break after appearing in all seven matches.

Jimmy Tupou starts at lock alongside Sam Whitelock, and Scott Barrett is in the reserves as Luke Romano has been rotated out of the match-day 23.

Carter returns from paternity leave to take a spot amongst the replacements.

This will be Franks’ 100th game for the Crusaders, which Blackadder says is a remarkable achievement that will be celebrated by the whole team.

"Everyone will want to make this a special occasion for Owen, because he gives so much to this team," he said.

"He leads the way with his professionalism and dedication and provides an outstanding mentor to other members of the team.  He gives 100 percent every single day, both in his preparation and when he plays.

"I know that Owen will approach this game the same way as he approaches every game, but we will take some time afterwards to mark this important milestone with him and show our appreciation for the immense contribution he makes to this team."

Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 David Havili, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (c), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Jimmy Tupou, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Joe Moody.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Alex Hodgman, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Scott Barrett, 20 Richie McCaw, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Dan Carter, 23 Nafi Tuitavake.

Date: Saturday, April 11
Kick-off: 19:35 local (07:35 GMT, 17:35 AEDT, 09:35 SAST)
Venue:  AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Referee: Glen Jackson
Assistant referees: Kane McBride, Shane McDermott
Television match official: Glenn Newman