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Subsequently, two changes have been made to the run-on side, with captain Scott Barrett among the casualties alongside Irish tighthead prop Oli Jager.
A knee issue means Barrett has been replaced by former All Blacks veteran Luke Romano in the second row, while the concussion that forced Jager from the field inside the first 10 minutes in Auckland has led to Samoan international Michael Alaalatoa earning selection at No. 3 this week.
Razor has named his team for Friday's big Mainland Derby against the @Highlanders here at home in Christchurch – https://t.co/mf0LrgRC3r Don't miss the action at home for the first time in 2020, get your tickets at https://t.co/SNCzFAO4sV #CRUvHIG #southernderby
— Crusaders (@crusadersrugby) February 19, 2020
The remainder of the Crusaders’ starting team unchanged, although there have been some alterations on the bench.
The only other change to the match day side comes at No. 23, as a groin injury to electric outside back Will Jordan has allowed fellow youngster Leicester Fainga’anuku to return after missing the Blues fixture to play for the Crusaders Development XV.
The Highlanders, meanwhile, have reshuffled their backline in the wake of their last-gasp 23-22 win over the Brumbies in Canberra six days ago.
? TEAM ANNOUNCEMENT ?
Your Landers side to take on the @crusadersrugbyteam in Christchurch this Friday night! Kick off 7.05pm NZT!
— Pulse Energy Highlanders (@Highlanders) February 18, 2020
In doing so, young Canterbury speedster Josh McKay has been demoted to the bench, while star midfielder Rob Thompson returns to the No. 13 jersey after being a late injury withdrawal for the Brumbies clash.
One-cap All Blacks flanker Dillon Hunt has dropped out of the Highlanders’ bench to captain the franchise’s development team, the Bravehearts, this weekend to accomodate for McKay’s culling in what is the only change in the reserves list.
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