Hunt gets pivotal role for Crusaders

Thu, 02 Mar 2017 07:25
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TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT: Crusaders head coach Scott Robertson has made eight changes matchday 23 that beat the Brumbies for their clash against the Highlanders.

There are two changes in the forwards - the first is at hooker, with Codie Taylor and Ben Funnell rotating so that Taylor takes the starting spot this Saturday.  The other change is in the loose forwards, with Matt Todd returning to wear the seven jersey and Jed Brown on the bench.

In the backs, Seta Tamanivalu shifts to the left wing, allowing Israel Dagg to move from fullback to the right wing. David Havili steps in at fullback, and Mitchell Hunt will start at flyhalf following Richie Mo'unga's hand injury.  

Marty McKenzie takes a spot in the reserves as backs cover, and scrumhalf Mitchell Drummond returns from his broken leg to take a seat on the bench.

Crusaders: 15 David Havili, 14 Israel Dagg, 13 Jack Goodhue, 13 Jack Goodhue, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Seta Tamanivalu, 10 Mitchell Hunt, 9 Bryn Hall, 8 Whetu Douglas, 7 Matt Todd, 6 Jordan Taufua, 5 Sam Whitelock (captain), 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody.      
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Luke Romano, 20 Jed Brown, 21 Mitchell Drummond, 22 Marty McKenzie, 23 George Bridge.

Date: Saturday, March 4
Venue: Forsyth Barr Stadium, Dunedin
Kick-off: 19.35 (06.45 GMT)
Referee: Paul Williams (New Zealand)
Assistant referees: Nick Briant (New Zealand), Jamie Nutbrown (New Zealand)
TMO: Shane McDermott (New Zealand)

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Tue, 27 June 2017
Hurricanes v B&I Lions 07h35 Westpac Stadium
Fri, 30 June 2017
Sharks v Bulls 17h00 Kings Park, Durban
Sat, 01 July 2017
Jaguares v Kings 23h05 Buenos Aires
New Zealand v B&I Lions 07h35 Westpac Stadium
Cheetahs v Stormers 13h05 Bloemfontein
Lions v Sunwolves 15h15 Ellis Park Stadium
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Team P W D L Pts
Brumbies 13 6 0 7 33
Waratahs 13 4 0 9 19
Force 13 4 0 9 17
Reds 13 3 0 10 17
Rebels 13 1 1 11 8
Pool NZ
Team P W D L Pts
Crusaders 14 14 0 0 63
Hurricanes 14 11 0 3 54
Chiefs 14 11 1 2 53
Highlanders 14 10 0 4 46
Blues 14 7 1 6 37
Pool SA1
Team P W D L Pts
Stormers 12 7 0 5 30
Cheetahs 13 3 0 10 16
Bulls 12 3 0 9 15
Sunwolves 12 1 0 11 7
Pool SA2
Team P W D L Pts
Lions 13 12 0 1 56
Sharks 13 9 1 3 42
Jaguares 12 5 0 7 24
Kings 12 4 0 8 19