Reid has been named captain

The Crusaders will open the Super Rugby season this Friday night when they meet the Blues in Auckland.  Coming off a successful pre-season where they knocked off the Highlanders, Hurricanes and Rebels, the Crusaders will be looking to continue their winning streak as the official season kicks off.

Four changes have been made to the starting fifteen that met the Rebels last week:

Wyatt Crockett comes into the number one jersey, and Ben Franks moves from loosehead prop to tighthead prop in place of brother Owen who will take the bench.

Sam Whitelock and Tom Donnelly remain the starting locks but switch jerseys.  They will be backed up by Luke Romano on the bench.

Robbie Fruean returns to centre and Ryan Crotty has recovered from a hamstring strain to start at second five.  Adam Whitelock and Tom Taylor who have filled this position in the last two warm-up games are both named in the reserves.

Starting xv:
1.    Wyatt Crocket
2.    Quentin MacDonald
3.    Ben Franks
4.    Tom Donnelly
5.    Samuel Whitelock
6.    George Whitelock
7.    Matt Todd
8.    Kieran Read (capt)
9.    Andy Ellis (vice capt)
10. Tyler Bleyendaal
11. Israel Dagg
12. Ryan Crotty
13. Robbie Fruean
14. Sean Maitland
15. Tom Marshall

1.    Corey Flynn
2.    Owen Franks
3.    Luke Romano
4.    Luke Whitelock
5.    Willie Heinz
6.    Patrick Osborne
7.    Adam Whitelock