Sam Whitelock returns as Crusaders name team for Waratahs clash
All Blacks centurion Sam Whitelock is set to lace up the boots for the first time in a month when the Crusaders take on the Waratahs in Christchurch on Saturday.
Following a few weeks on the sidelines with an injury, Whitelock is set to play his first game for the Crusaders since the title holders were beaten by the ladder-leading Chiefs last month.
Whitelock will line-up in the second row alongside Quinten Strange, while usual captain Scott Barrett takes a rest week as per the All Blacks’ policy.
Hooker Codie Taylor will lead the team in round 14, and will pack down in the front row alongside Kershawl Sykes-Martin and Tamaiti Williams.
Christian Lio-Willie, Tom Christie and Cullen Grace make up the loose forward trio this week.
As for the backline, coach Scott Robertson has named the experienced halves duo of Mitchell Drummond and Richie Mo’unga. The pair will look to unleash an exciting backline this weekend.
Vice-captain David Havili will combine with Braydon Ennor in the midfield, while Leicester Fainga’anuku and Dallas McLeod take their spots on the wings.
Fergus Burke has shifted from flyhalf back to fullback.
The match between the Crusaders and Waratahs – two traditional Super Rugby rivals – is set to get underway at 4.35pm on Saturday at Christchurch’s Orangetheory Stadium.
Crusaders team to take on the Waratahs
- Kershawl Sykes-Martin
- Codie Taylor (c)
- Tamaiti Williams
- Quinten Strange
- Sam Whitelock
- Christian Lio-Willie
- Tom Christie
- Cullen Grace
- Mitchell Drummond
- Richie Mo’unga
- Leicester Fainga’anuku
- David Havili (vc)
- Braydon Ennor
- Dallas McLeod
- Fergus Burke
- Brodie McAlister
- Seb Calder
- Reuben O’Neill
- Zach Gallagher
- Sione Havili Talitui
- Noah Hotham
- Chay Fihaki
- Wil Gualter
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Retallick and whitelock still good enough to take on the best but they have to produce the quality several games in a row. Who do the Kiwis have after they and Scott b? At least the front row will be okay. Back row interesting coz Sam came and Ardie look sorta essential but can it work? Works better with brodies work rate but still.. what do you think nick. Can they get away without the backup locks?Go to comments
He’s probably right. The Boks are going to play like the Boks and that’s hard to shake but on saying that the Boks were done in Brighton and pressured by Japan in Japan. Dunno what tongas got in the front row but their loosies will be powerful and their back three very dangerous. Maybe Adam coleman at lock and sekope kepu up front?Go to comments