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Crusaders make just one change for sudden-death Chiefs clash

By Online Editors
(Photo by Hannah Peters/Getty Images)

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Crusaders head coach Scott Robertson is taking a largely unchanged lineup into Friday night’s massive semi-final clash against the Chiefs in Christchurch.

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With openside flanker Ethan Blackadder ruled out for the remainder of the Super Rugby Pacific season after dislocating his shoulder in the quarter-final, Tom Christie is the only new face in the run-on team to face the Chiefs this week.

Christie’s promotion to the starting side means Corey Kellow gets an opportunity in the reserves, while Tamaiti Williams retains his spot on the bench this week, having stepped in after Finlay Brewis was a late withdrawal from the Reds match.

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Friday night’s fixture will double as a special milestone match, with Scott Robertson and forwards coach Jase Ryan both bringing up their 100th game as Super Rugby coaches. The duo’s first match in charge was the opening fixture of the 2017 season against the Brumbies.

Speaking to media at Rugby Park this morning, Robertson said: “You’re really proud to get to 100 but it’s a milestone, it’s something you want to reflect on. You don’t use it as such during the week, you want to talk about it after the fact and you want it to just be a great performance and prepare the boys to be ready.”

Kick-off in the Crusaders match against the Chiefs is at 7:05pm (NZT), Friday 10th June at Orangetheory Stadium in Christchurch.

Crusaders: Will Jordan, Sevu Reece, Jack Goodhue, David Havili, Leicester Fainga’anuku, Richie Mo’unga, Bryn Hall, Cullen Grace, Tom Christie, Pablo Matera, Sam Whitelock, Scott Barrett, Oli Jager, Codie Taylor, George Bower. Reserves: Brodie McAlister, Tamaiti Williams, Fletcher Newell, Zach Gallagher, Corey Kellow, Mitchell Drummond, Braydon Ennor, George Bridge.

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– Crusaders Rugby

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