Planet Rugby

McCaw at six for Crusaders

01st May 2014 04:34

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richie mccaw crusaders

Blindside: Richie McCaw

The Crusaders will play their first home game in over a month when they face the Brumbies this Saturday in Christchurch.

Head Coach Todd Blackadder has named a team with five changes to the starting fifteen that beat the Chiefs two weeks ago.

Richie McCaw has recovered from his broken thumb to return to the starting line-up and will play at number six.

Matt Todd retains the number seven jersey and Luke Whitelock comes in at number eight with Kieran ruled out due to the concussion suffered against the Chiefs.

Also returning from injury are Kieron Fonotia and Luke Romano. Fonotia will play at centre, seeing Tom Taylor take a place in the reserves, and Romano will provide lock cover off the bench.

The hookers and half-backs rotate again this week, so Ben Funnell will be the starting hooker and Andy Ellis the starting half-back. Corey Flynn and Willi Heinz will be ready to provide impact off the bench.

Centre Ryan Crotty will captain the side in Read's absence and McCaw will take up the vice-captaincy reins.

Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Kieron Fonotia, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Luke Whitelock, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Richie McCaw, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett
Replacements: 16 Corey Flynn, 17 Tim Perry, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Willi Heinz, 22 Tom Taylor, 23 Nafi Tuitavake

Date: Saturday, May 3
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kickoff: 16:35 (local, 04:35 GMT)
Referee: Glen Jackson (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand), Ben O'Keefe (New Zealand)
TMO: Vinny Munro (New Zealand)

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