Ton up for the biggest Crusader
All Black superstar Kieran Read will feature in his 100 game for the Crusaders when he leads the team out against the Hurricanes.
All Black superstar Kieran Read, one of the best players in the world, will feature in his 100 game for the Crusaders when he leads the team out against the Hurricanes on Friday.
The Round Seven Super Rugby fixture will be a momentous occasion for the man rated the best No.8 in the world.
Having debuted in 2007, Read has played his entire Super Rugby career with the Crusaders.
Despite the numerous provincial, national and international awards that Read has won, he says earning 100 caps for the Crusaders still counts as one of his proudest moments.
"This is my team," Read said.
"I have been playing for the Crusaders virtually since my professional career began and I feel very proud to have represented this team for 100 games," he added.
"When you look at the other players who have achieved 100 games for the Crusaders, you realise what an honour it is.
"Being selected for an award is one thing, but being selected for the Crusaders team 100 times is a real reflection of the hard work I've put in over the years and something I can feel truly proud of."
Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder named a team that shows just one change to the team that beat the Melbourne Rebels two weeks ago.
With Tim Perry nursing a hamstring strain, loosehead prop Daniel Lienert-Brown has been called into the squad to provide cover from the replacement bench.
Lienert-Brown has been in the Crusaders Knights development team and was called into the New Zealand Under-20 squad last year as injury cover.
Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Nafi Tuitavake, 13 Ryan Crotty, 12 Tom Taylor, 11 Johnny McNicholl, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Luke Whitelock, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Luke Romano, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Ben Funnell, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Codie Taylor, 17 Daniel Lienert-Brown, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Dominic Bird, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Kieron Fonotia, 23 Nemani Nadolo.
Date: Friday, March 28
Venue: AMI Stadium, Christchurch
Kick-off: 19.35 (06.35 GMT)
Referee: Nick Briant (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand), Kane McBride (New Zealand)
TMO: Chris Watt (New Zealand)