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Hurricanes v Blues

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The Breakdown: Crusaders on the move

After an emotional week of rugby, the Reds are set to clash with season favourites the Crusaders, and the Tahs are desperate for a win in Canberra.

PT0M0S 620 349

Westpac Stadium, Wellington, Friday 5.35pm (AEST)
Last meeting:
Round 5 2012 - Hurricanes 26 bt Blues 25 at Eden Park
Head-to-head:
Played 18 Hurricanes 6 Blues 11 drawn 1
In Wellington:
Played 7 Hurricanes 2 Blues 4 drawn 1
Referee:
Jaco Peyper (RSA)
TV:
Live, FoxSports 3
TAB Sportsbet:
Hurricanes $1.57 Blues $2.30

Greg Growden writes: Desperate Blues coach Pat Lam keeps throwing the players cards up and see what falls. This time, Blues five-eighth Gareth Anscombe is a casualty after they fell apart against the Reds. 'Gareth is the future going forward," Lam said. Not this week.

AAP writes: The Hurricanes' impressive opening to the season seems a while ago following losses to the Crusaders and Chiefs and it's a last-ditch time at home now. They're at least settled after Mark Hammett named an unchanged team. The hapless Blues, on the other hand, have shuffled the chairs and unfortunately for them none of the new faces belong to All Black front-rowers Keven Mealamu and Tony Woodcock. Young flyhalf Gareth Anscombe is a scapegoat for the 23-11 loss to the Reds with Michael Hobbs taking his place at No.10. Benson Stanley comes into the centres with Rene Ranger moving to wing, while Daniel Braid has been dropped for Chris Lowrey.

HURRICANES: Andre Taylor, Cory Jane, Conrad Smith (capt), Tim Bateman, Julian Savea, Beauden Barrett, TJ Perenara, Victor Vito, Karl Lowe, Faifili Levave, Jason Eaton, Jeremy Thrush, Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, Dane Coles, Ben May. Reserves: Motu Matu'u, Reg Goodes, Jack Lam, Brad Shields, Chris Eaton, Charlie Ngatai, Alapati Leiua.

BLUES: Hadleigh Parkes, Rene Ranger, Benson Stanley, Ma'a Nonu, George Moala, Michael Hobbs, Piri Weepu, Peter Saili, Luke Braid (capt), Chris Lowrey, Ali Williams, Filo Paulo, Charlie Faumuina, Tom McCartney, Tevita Mailau. Reserves: James Parsons, Angus Ta'avao, Liaki Moli, Daniel Braid, Alby Mathewson, Lachie Munro, David Raikuna.

Related Coverage

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 29:  Robbie Fruean of the Crusaders is tackled during the round 10 Super Rugby match between the Waratahs and the Crusaders at Allianz Stadium on April 29, 2012 in Sydney, Australia.  (Photo by Cameron Spencer/Getty Images) The Breakdown: Crusaders on the move

After an emotional week of rugby, the Reds are set to clash with season favourites the Crusaders, and the Tahs are desperate for a win in Canberra.

Expert tips

Fairfax's panel of experts's tips for round 18.

Melbourne Rebels v Bulls

AAMI Park, Melbourne, Saturday 7.40pm (AEST)

Chiefs v Lions

Bayer Growers Stadium, Pukekohe 5.35pm (AEST)

Brumbies v NSW Waratahs

Canberra Stadium, Canberra, Saturday 7.40pm (AEST)

Sharks v Highlanders

ABSA Stadium, Durban 1.05am (AEST)

Cheetahs v Western Force

Vodacom Park, Bloemfontein, Sunday 3.10am (AEST)

Crusaders v Queensland Reds

Christchurch Park, Christchurch 2.00pm(AEST)

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