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Team Naming | Super Round v Highlanders

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The Crusaders have named the squad that will take on the Highlanders at Super Rugby Pacific’s Super Round in Melbourne. The team run out onto AAMI Park on Friday 3 March at 6:00pm AEDT (8:00pm NZDT).  


We head into Round 2 with opportunities for learning and growth following Round 1 versus the Chiefs at home in Christchurch. 


Scott Robertson, Crusaders Head Coach, said the team was focusing on “getting our week right, getting our daily habits right, getting our performances right.” 


“There were some awesome efforts last week, and a couple of things we need to get better at,” Robertson said. 


Sam Whitelock returns to play in a big motivational move for the team. The All Blacks centurion will bring maturity and more than a decade of experience onto the grass. 


“It’s great to have him back around the group, you know, 14 years’ experience – we all know how important he is for us,” Robertson said. 


After a starring debut at Orangetheory Stadium last week, Christian Lio-Willie takes a spot in the starting XV, while Cullen Grace undergoes further assessment after sustaining an injury versus the Chiefs.

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David Havili moves to second five-eighth with Jack Goodhue moving to centre. Fergus Burke steers the ship from fullback. 


“Ferg’s been playing great footy you know. He’s quick enough, he’s big enough and he can punt a ball. We had him there for a bit of the pre-season to set him up and this is the game we decided to do it,” Robertson said. 


We’re set for another potential debut in the Super Round on Friday, with Noah Hotham occupying a seat on the bench. The 19-year-old said it was “pretty surreal” to be in the same room as the likes of Codie Taylor and Sam Whitelock. 


“It wasn’t that long ago I was in high school and before that at intermediate watching these guys on TV, so yeah that’s a bit crazy,” Hotham said. 


“But you know, the more you train with them, the more you get to hang out with the boys, having lunch, in the gym, you build those connections.” 


Get ready for a heap of code over the next few days. The boys take the field Friday 3 March, 8pm NZDT (6pm AEDT), the first of three days of double headers at AAMI Park. 

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  1. Joe Moody
  2. Codie Taylor (VC)
  3. Tamaiti Williams
  4. Scott Barrett (C)
  5. Sam Whitelock
  6. Ethan Blackadder
  7. Tom Christie
  8. Christian Lio-Willie
  9. Mitchell Drummond
  10. Richie Mo'unga
  11. Leicester Fainga'anuku
  12. David Havili
  13. Jack Goodhue
  14. Sevu Reece
  15. Fergus Burke

16. Brodie McAlister
17. George Bower
18. Seb Calder
19. Zach Gallagher
20. Sione Havili Talitui
21. Noah Hotham*
22. Braydon Ennor
23. Macca Springer.

* Debut