Crusaders team to play the Highlanders

Getty Images and James Mortimer     20 Apr 2013     Getty Images

The game takes place Saturday 20th April at AMI Stadium, Addington. Kick off is at 7.35pm.

Crusaders Head Coach Todd Blackadder has named his team to play the Highlanders making three changes to the starting fifteen that played the Force.

Sam Whitelock returns to the starting fifteen as does flanker Matt Todd. Winger Zac Guildford takes the number 11 jersey moving Adam Whitelock to the bench.

“The team are excited to be home again and playing at AMI Stadium. We’ve been travelling for 3 weeks and there is nothing like hearing the roar of the home crowd. We hope Crusader fans will give the boys a home-coming to remember. “

‘There is nothing like a classic Southern Derby to bring out the best in both the Crusaders and the Highlanders. It is always a great game with an amazing atmosphere and with both teams hungry for the win there is sure to be plenty of passion on the field this Saturday ’ says Blackadder.

The game will mark a special occasion for Sam Whitelock who will be playing his 50th Super Rugby game for the Crusaders. His brother Adam will also mark his 50th cap if he makes the field. All four Whitelock brothers are named in the 22 this weekend as is cousin Ben Funnell.

There are only 2,500 tickets left so fans are encouraged to get in quick. Tickets can be purchased through Ticket Direct ( or 0800 224 224) or from The Warehouse.

Fans are reminded that there will be a free direct bus service to the game at AMI Stadium. The Rugby Express park and ride service will run from Northwood Supa Cenre, The Hub Hornby, The Palms, Beresford Street (via New Brighton and Eastgate) and Merivale Mall, returning rugby fans back to their base after the game.

Crusaders: Israel Dagg, Tom Marshall, Robbie Fruean, Ryan Crotty, Zac Guildford, Tyler Bleyendaal, Andy Ellis; Luke Whitelock, Matt Todd, George Whitelock, Sam Whitelock, Luke Romano, Owen Franks, Corey Flynn, Wyatt Crockett. Reserves: Ben Funnell, Joe Moody, Dominic Bird, Jordan Taufua, Willi Heinz, Tom Taylor, Adam Whitelock