Crusaders Super rugby head coach Scott Robertson has named his team to play the Brumbies in Christchurch at AMI stadium in what will be the team’s first home game in three rounds.
All Blacks Joe Moody and Owen Franks both return from injury to bolster the front row, meaning Harry Allan and Michael Alaalatoa move to the reserves for this game.
At lock, Quinten Strange and Sam Whitelock will swap this week, so that Strange takes the starting spot and Whitelock is on the bench. Matt Todd will Captain the side in the No. 7 jersey.
The only other change in the forwards sees Ethan Blackadder earn his first Super Rugby start for 2019, at six.
In the backs, Mitchell Drummond is the starting halfback this week and Bryn Hall provides cover on the bench, while Sevu Reece has earned promotion from the bench to start on the left wing against the Brumbies.
Tim Bateman lines up at centre in what will be his 50th game for the Crusaders, while 19 year-old Leicester Faingaanuku is set to debut from the bench.
Owen Franks will play his 150th Crusaders game this week (149th Super Rugby game).
This Saturday’s match will be the Crusaders’ first opportunity to unite the Christchurch community following the events of 15 March.
There will be a moment’s silence before the teams run to field. Pre-game, a local music group, The Healing Song, will perform a rendition of Dave Dobbyn’s ‘Welcome Home’, which will be followed by a musical performance at halftime by Christchurch’s Vocal Collective.
15 David Havili, 14 Will Jordan, 13 Tim Bateman, 12 Ryan Crotty, 11 Sevu Reece, 10 Richie Mo’unga, 9 Mitchell Drummond, 8 Kieran Read, 7 Matt Todd (captain), 6 Ethan Blackadder, 5 Quinten Strange, 4 Scott Barrett, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody
Replacements: 16 Ben Funnell, 17 Harry Allan, 18 Michael Alaalatoa, 19 Sam Whitelock, 20 Jordan Taufua, 21 Bryn Hall, 22 Brett Cameron, 23 Leicester Faingaanuku