Israel Dagg will start on the wing against the Blues.
(Photo by Matt King/Getty Images)
All Blacks fullback Israel Dagg will play on the wing for
the Crusaders' opening Super 15 game against the Blues at Eden
Park on Friday.
With Zac Guildford taking a self-imposed break from the game
after a recent alcohol-related incident, Dagg will take his
spot on the wing, with Tom Taylor starting at fullback.
The forward pack has an established look about it, with All
Blacks Wyatt Crockett, Corey Flynn, Owen Franks, Luke Romano
and Sam Whitelock making up the tight five.
Dan Carter will start at first five-eighths, linking up with
halfback Andrew Ellis for a eighth season together at the
Joe Moody and Dominic Bird have the opportunity to make their
first appearance for Crusaders if called upon from the bench.
The game will mark a milestone for Robbie Fruean, who will be
playing his 50th game for the Crusaders. The centre, who has
scored 13 tries, joined the Crusaders in 2009 after making
his debut in Super Rugby for the Hurricanes.
The team will be captained by experienced Crusader and All
Black Kieran Read in the absence of Richie McCaw, who is
taking a sabbatical.
Crusaders team to play the Blues at Eden Park on Friday
(7.35pm): Tom Taylor, Adam Whitelock, Robbie Fruean, Ryan
Crotty, Israel Dagg, Dan Carter, Andy Ellis, Kieran Read (c),
Matt Todd, George Whitelock, Samuel Whitelock, Luke Romano,
Owen Franks, Corey Flynn, Wyatt Crockett. Reserves: Ben
Funnell, Joe Moody, Dominic Bird, Luke Whitelock, Willi
Heinz, Tyler Bleyendaal, Tom Marshall.