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Fresh front row for the Crusaders versus Chiefs

crusaders.co.nz and James Mortimer     04 Jul 2013    

Crusaders Head Coach Todd Blackadder has named his team making five changes to the starting fifteen that bet the Highlanders last weekend.

The forward pack see’s Wyatt Crockett, Corey Flynn and Owen Franks return to the front row. Crockett and Flynn both started on the bench last weekend and Franks returns from an elbow infection which saw him hospitalised for two days.

Luke Romano joins Sam Whitelock in the middle row and Kieran Read claims the number eight jersey moving Luke Whitelock and Tom Donnelly to the bench.

The last time the two sides met was in round fifteen of the competition when the Crusaders came away with a 28-19 loss. While the Chiefs have won the last three times these two sides have met, they have not played in Crusader country since 2009. The Crusaders will be looking to remind their Waikato counterparts what it’s like to play in front of a Crusader home crowd and to secure their place in the play offs.

The Crusaders are currently sitting fifth on the table and have two round robin matches left to play. Both games are derby matches against their New Zealand counterparts at AMI Stadium. The Chiefs on 5th July followed by the Hurricanes on 12th July. Both Friday night games kick-off is at 7.35pm.

Tickets are still available and can be purchased through Ticket Direct (ticketdirect.co.nz or 0800 224 224) or from The Warehouse. Tickets start from as little as $16 for Adults and $7.50 for kids 16years and under (plus service fees). Take a Kid to Footy (1 Adult, 1 Child) tickets are only $24.

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 Centre, 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, Ryan Crotty, Tom Taylor, Zac Guildford, Dan Carter, Andy Ellis, Kieran Read, Matt Todd, George Whitelock, Sam Whitelock, Luke Romano, Owen Franks, Corey Flynn, Wyatt Crockett. Reserves: Ben Funnell, Joe Moody, Tom Donnelly, Luke Whitelock, Willi Heinz, Tyler Bleyendaal, Telusa Veainu.