Crusaders change six for Blues

Date published: July 12 2018

Crusaders boss Scott Robertson has made six changes to his starting XV to face the Blues in their Super Rugby derby in Christchurch on Saturday.

Of the four changes in the forwards, the champions welcome the return of prop Tim Perry from the hamstring injury he sustained prior to the June international break.

At tighthead, Michael Alaalatoa moves from the bench to the starting side for this game.

Quinten Strange will partner captain Sam Whitelock at lock, with Scott Barrett rested this week. In the loose forwards, Jordan Taufua will start in the number six jersey, and Pete Samu comes in to the reserves.

The only changes in the backs will see Mitchell Drummond wear the number nine jersey this week and Bryn Hall take a spot on the replacements bench. David Havili will also sit out this game, and has been replaced at full-back by Israel Dagg.

On the reserves bench, Otago hooker Sam Anderson-Heather joins the squad and could earn his first Crusaders cap this week. Anderson-Heather will provide cover for Andrew Makalio in the absence of Codie Taylor, who is another All Black rested for this match.

Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Seta Tamanivalu, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 George Bridge, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock (c), 4 Quinten Strange, 3 Michael Alaalatoa, 2 Andrew Makalio, 1 Tim Perry
Replacements: 16 Sam Anderson-Heather, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Donald Brighouse, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Pete Samu, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Mitchell Hunt, 23 Manasa Mataele

Date: Saturday, July 14
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kick-off: 19:35 local (08:35 BST, 07:35 GMT)
Referee: Federico Anselmi
Assistant Referees: Jamie Nutbrown, Mike Fraser
TMO: Shane McDermott