Super Rugby newcomers get chance for Crusaders
George Whitelock will lead the Crusaders. Photo: Getty Images
Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder is taking the opportunity to test his new squad members in Saturday's pre-season Super Rugby warm-up against the Hurricanes in Timaru.
With many of the more experienced players still working their way back to match fitness, seven rookies will make their first appearance in the starting line-up.
Joe Moody, Codie Taylor, Dominic Bird, Shane Christie, Jordan Taufua, Jeremy Su'a and Kieran Fonotia will run on for the Crusaders.
With new captain Kieran Read being rested, experienced Crusader George Whitelock will lead the team.
The Hurricanes are also making full use of their extended squad, although the match will be halfback TJ Perenara's first after breaking his ankle last June.
The match will be played over 20-minute quarters, with rolling substitutions.
Crusaders: Tom Marshall, James Schrader, Kieran Fonotia, Robbie Fruean, Shayne Anderson, Tyler Blyendaal, Jeremy Su'a, Jordan Taufua, Shane Christie, George Whitelock, Joel Everson, Dominic Bird, Owen Franks, Codie Taylor, Joe Moody. Res: Paea Fa'anunu, Adrian Barone, Mitch Graham, Ben Funnell, Jimmy Tupou, Matt Simons, Luke Whitelock, Matt Todd, Andy Ellis, Tyrone Elkington, Kolio Hifo, Stephen Burt.
Hurricanes: Andre Taylor, Richard Buckman, Tim Bateman, Rey LeeLo, Matt Proctor, James Marshall, Chris Smylie, Mike Coman, Karl Lowe, Callum Gibbins, Jason Eaton, Blade Thomson, Ben May, Ash Dixon, Reg Goodes. Res: Dane Coles, Jeremy Thrush, Eric Sione, Jeffery Toomaga-Allen, James Broadhurst, Mark Reddish, Faifili Levave, TJ Perenara, Papa Wharewera, Ope Peleseuma, Ambrose Curtis, Parataiso Silafai-Lea'ana.