Crusaders experiment with Taylor

Thu, 17 Apr 2014 07:15
Large tom taylorpass

All Black flyhalf Tom Taylor will start at outside centre when the Crusaders travel to meet the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.

All Black flyhalf Tom Taylor will start at outside centre when the Crusaders travel to meet the Chiefs in Hamilton on Saturday.
The 25-year-old playmaker has never started a match at outside centre in Super Rugby before, but with the injury to Kieron Fonotia and with Reynold Lee-Lo having fallen out of favour at the Christchurch-based team - the number 13 jersey will be Taylor's on Saturday.
The three-cap All Black has started at flyhalf, inside centre and fullback for the Crusaders in his 26 games for the side in which he has amassed 255 points, but now will try his hand at a new position.
A different strategy might have been to shift Ryan Crotty to outside centre and to play Taylor in his more comfortable position of inside centre, but with the great form Crotty has shown in the number 12 jersey in recent weeks, Crusaders head coach Todd Blackadder has decided to keep the changes to his backline to a minimum.
As such, the rest of the backline remains the same which means that Willi Heinz continues to keep Andy Ellis on the bench in their scrumhalf battle.
In the forwards there are two changes. 
Owen Franks and Nepo Laulala have switched places again so that Franks takes the number three jersey this week and Laulala takes a place on the bench. 
Jordan Taufua will run out in the starting fifteen for the first time this season, having been promoted from the replacements bench to take the number six jersey and George Whitelock drops out of the matchday squad altogether.  
Loose forward Luke Whitelock will provide cover from the bench and will be joined by Tim Perry who takes one of the replacement prop places from Daniel Lienert-Brown.
Utility back Adam Whitelock joins the matchday squad for the first time since the Crusaders 24-35 loss to the Blues on February 28, and takes the number 23 jersey.
Lock Luke Romano, centre Fonotia, loose forward Richie McCaw and prop Joe Moody remained sidelined with injury.
Crusaders: 15 Israel Dagg, 14 Johnny McNicholl, 13 Tom Taylor, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Nemani Nadolo, 10 Colin Slade, 9 Willi Heinz, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Tuafua, 5 Sam Whitelock, 4 Dominic Bird, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Corey Flynn, 1 Wyatt Crockett.
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Tim Perry, 18 Nepo Laulala, 19 Jimmy Tupou, 20 Luke Whitelock, 21 Andy Ellis, 22 Tyler Bleyendaal, 23 Adam Whitelock.
Date: Saturday, April 19
Venue: Waikato Stadium, Hamilton
Kickoff: 19:35 (07:35 GMT)
Referee: Garratt Williamson (New Zealand)
Assistant Referees: Glen Jackson (New Zealand), Kane McBride (New Zealand)
TMO: Glenn Newman (New Zealand)
There are currently no matches being played
Tue, 06 October 2015
Canada v Romania 15h45 Leicester
Fiji v Uruguay 19h00 Milton Keynes
Wed, 07 October 2015
South Africa v United States 15h45 London
Namibia v Georgia 19h00 Exeter
Fri, 09 October 2015
Pumas v Blue Bulls 16h00 Mbombela Stadium
Western Province v EP Kings 16h00 Newlands
New Zealand v Tonga 19h00 Newcastle
Sat, 10 October 2015
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 12h00 Bloemfontein
Samoa v Scotland 13h30 Newcastle
Golden Lions v Griquas 14h00 Ellis Park
Australia v Wales 15h45 London
England v Uruguay 19h00 Manchester
Sun, 11 October 2015
Argentina v Namibia 11h00 Leicester
Italy v Romania 13h30 Exeter
France v Ireland 15h45 Cardiff
United States v Japan 19h00 Gloucester
Pool AU
Team P W D L Pts
Waratahs 16 11 0 5 52
Brumbies 16 9 0 7 47
Rebels 16 7 0 9 36
Reds 16 4 0 12 22
Force 16 3 0 13 19
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Hurricanes 16 14 0 2 66
Highlanders 16 11 0 5 53
Chiefs 16 10 0 6 48
Crusaders 16 9 0 7 46
Blues 16 3 0 13 20
Pool SA
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 16 10 1 5 45
Lions 16 9 1 6 42
Bulls 16 7 0 9 38
Sharks 16 7 0 9 34
Cheetahs 16 5 0 11 26