Crusaders vs B&I Lions



  • Where's the team, Razor?

    I suspect we might see a few surprises and this might not be a full strength Crusaders outfit.

    Lots of Razor's forwards have a pretty intense month coming up, so with a bit of consultation with Hansen, Razor might think he has bigger fish to fry than capturing the Lions scalp and give his guys a break while he can.

    Wouldn't surprise me to see some or all of Franks, Taylor, Whitelock and Romano rested.



  • Really looking forward to this... win or lose it's going to be the best night out in Christchurch since pre earthquake days 🙂



  • I don't think both of Whitelock and Romano will be rested. One will start, probably Romano.

    Todd to captain.

    Hall is in the Maori squad, so he may not start.

    Franks is a key man but he could get 30 minutes.



  • @ACT-Crusader Sam Whitelock seemed pretty keen to play, so I was thinking maybe Razor has struck a deal with Shag that Sammy plays this game and Luke plays vs Samoa. That would allow Whitelock, Barrett, Strange - which would be good enough for me. Logically, though Sam has had and will have the highest workload....

    I'll be disappointed if Owen Franks doesn't play, because that will substantially weaken us. Alaalatoa isn't nearly as good - though Jager can do Alaalatoa's job. Again, though, logically you'd rest Owen.

    Funnell and Makalio will be OK though.



  • Strongest team available.

    1. Joe Moody
    2. Codie Taylor
    3. Owen Franks
    4. Luke Romano
    5. Sam Whitelock (C)
    6. Heiden Bedwell-Curtis
    7. Matt Todd (VC)
    8. Jordan Taufua
    9. Bryn Hall
    10. Richie Mo'unga
    11. George Bridge
    12. David Havili
    13. Jack Goodhue
    14. Seta Tamanivalu
    15. Israel Dagg

    RESERVES
    16. Ben Funnell
    17. Wyatt Crockett
    18. Michael Alaalatoa
    19. Quinten Strange
    20. Jed Brown
    21. Mitchell Drummond
    22. Mitchell Hunt
    23. Tim Bateman

    Bloody good job.



  • Nice, plan must be to pull the ABs at the 50 min mark once the lead hits about 30 points.



  • Razor gives me the big "fuck you"! 🙂

    He's going for the unbeaten season.

    I'll be giving you the big "fuck you" back, Razor, if those guys run out of gas in July! 🙂



  • @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    I'll be giving you the big "fuck you" back, Razor, if those guys run out of gas in July! 🙂

    Yeah I'd quite happily sacrifice a win here for the Super Rugby title in July



  • @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Razor gives me the big "fuck you"! 🙂

    He's going for the unbeaten season.

    I'll be giving you the big "fuck you" back, Razor, if those guys run out of gas in July! 🙂

    Works for me, wouldn't say no to back-to-back titles.



  • @SammyC said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    I'll be giving you the big "fuck you" back, Razor, if those guys run out of gas in July! 🙂

    Yeah I'd quite happily sacrifice a win here for the Super Rugby title in July

    Razor clearly didn't watch Moneyball earlier in the week like I did.

    Nobody remembers what you did if you don't win your last game of the season!



  • I guess the Blues have put a bit of pressure on the Saders in this match. If that rabble can beat them you'd better not bloody lose!



  • I'm surprised by your surprise about the strongest possible squad being named. It was said ages ago that all fit All Blacks would be available for this game. Sam Whitelock has also clearly indicated in the media that he wanted to play this game and preferably the full 80 minutes. I don't think that's different for any of the other players, ABs included.



  • @No-Quarter That's hilarious.



  • A few other things about this team.

    No Scott Barrett and No Kieran Read. Not yet ready to go or just not picked? I thought Barrett was fit for selection and needs game miles in his legs?

    Surprised they moved Havili to second-five. He's been pretty awesome at fullback (not so much last week) and Dagg is surely going to be playing wing for the ABs if he gets a game. I would have started Bateman and had Bridge on the bench.



  • @Stargazer True - but I saw Jason Ryan during the week saying this...

    The Lions face the Blues at Eden Park on Wednesday prior to the match against seven-times Super Rugby champion Crusaders on Saturday, with coach Scott Robertson able to select his All Blacks for the game before they head into camp.

    Robertson had said last week it was likely they would field as close as possible to a full-strength side at Rugby League Park, but Ryan said they would also keep an eye on their All Blacks' workload, especially captain Sam Whitelock.

    "Sammy is like the rest of them, he has got a few niggles," Ryan said. "We have to be smart there, there is a bigger picture for the All Blacks. We don't want to flog them.

    "Steve (Hansen) and the All Blacks coaches will want them fresh for the series, so we want to give everyone an opportunity in the 23 to play against the Lions."

    http://www.radionz.co.nz/news/sport/332360/crotty-to-miss-crusaders-game-against-lions



  • @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Stargazer True - but I saw Jason Ryan during the week saying this...

    "Sammy is like the rest of them, he has got a few niggles," Ryan said. "We have to be smart there, there is a bigger picture for the All Blacks. We don't want to flog them.

    "Steve (Hansen) and the All Blacks coaches will want them fresh for the series, so we want to give everyone an opportunity in the 23 to play against the Lions."

    That's interesting. I wonder if they decided that the best decision from a national perspective is to actually just keep the foot on the throat.



  • at least that side rings closer to the truth about Gatlands comment about there being little difference between Super sides and the ABs.

    So is Seta only seen as a wing now?



  • @Frye Yeah- it will be interesting to see how much time these guys get vs the Lions - and vs Samoa for that matter.

    It's hopefully going to be a busy few weeks for the Crusaders tight forwards - might look something like....

    Lions, Samoa, Lions, Lions, Lions, Hurricanes, Highlanders, Chiefs, Lions



  • @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Frye Yeah- it will be interesting to see how much time these guys get vs the Lions - and vs Samoa for that matter.

    It's hopefully going to be a busy few weeks for the Crusaders tight forwards - might look something like....

    Lions, Samoa, Lions, Lions, Lions, Hurricanes, Highlanders, Chiefs, Lions

    Is that the sequel to Gary Freeman's book?



  • @Wurzel LOL

    Tiger, Tiger, Kiwi, Rooster redux!



  • I wonder which player is going to lead the haka. I may remember it wrong, but I think they'll do Ka mate.

    Bateman has led the haka for the Māori ABs when he was captain a few years ago.
    Or Dagg? Hall? Taylor? Bedwell-Curtis?



  • Lions:
    Stuart Hogg; George North, Jonathan Davies, Ben Te’o, Liam Williams; Owen Farrell, Conor Murray; Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Tadhg Furlong; Alun Wyn Jones (C), George Kruis; Peter O’Mahony, Sean O’Brien, Taulupe Faletau.

    Reps: Ken Owens, Jack McGrath, Dan Cole, Maro Itoje, CJ Stander, Rhys Webb, Jonathan Sexton, Anthony Watson.



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Lions:
    Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Tadhg Furlong; Alun Wyn Jones (C), George Kruis; Peter O’Mahony, Sean O’Brien, Taulupe Faletau, Conor Murray, Owen Farrell, Liam Williams, Ben Te’o, Jonathan Davies, George North, Stuart Hogg

    Reps: Ken Owens, Jack McGrath, Dan Cole, Maro Itoje, CJ Stander, Rhys Webb, Jonathan Sexton, Anthony Watson.

    Fixed it for those of us not stuck in the dark ages.



  • @Stargazer I'd imagine it would be Taylor. Not sure why, must be the mabo.



  • Razor was on the News tonight expecting a shadow test team. How close do y'all think is?

    Maybe nine of the starting XV would be in the test starting XV? Most of the bench would be somewhere in the match 23?

    That's vaguely what I've gleaned on here. Otherwise I've got no idea. 🙂



  • Good Lions side. This will be awesome, i hope I'm in front of it



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Lions:
    Stuart Hogg; George North, Jonathan Davies, Ben Te’o, Liam Williams; Owen Farrell, Conor Murray; Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Tadhg Furlong; Alun Wyn Jones (C), George Kruis; Peter O’Mahony, Sean O’Brien, Taulupe Faletau.

    Reps: Ken Owens, Jack McGrath, Dan Cole, Maro Itoje, CJ Stander, Rhys Webb, Jonathan Sexton, Anthony Watson.

    Strong Lions side. If we can't turn over the Crusaders with this lot on show, then we can forget the tests.

    Based on end of season performances and the first two matches i.e. FORM this is the 23 I would select for the 1st Test today.

    1st Test Squad
    Halfpenny, North, Davies, Te'o, Daly, Farrell, Webb
    Vunipola, Owens, Furlong, Itoje, AWJ, O'Brien, Warburton (Capt.), Faletau

    Marler, George, McGrath, Cole, Kruis, Tipuric
    Murray, Sexton, Watson

    A lot of rugby between now and the 1st Test and expect players like Hogg, L Williams, Murray, and O'Mahony to show us why they should be in the 23



  • @MiketheSnow A cunning plan to have an extra forward reserve? 🙂



  • @Bovidae said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @MiketheSnow A cunning plan to have an extra forward reserve? 🙂

    Ha ha. Ooooops
    Perm 2 props from 3



  • @Frye said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Chris-B. said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @Stargazer True - but I saw Jason Ryan during the week saying this...

    "Sammy is like the rest of them, he has got a few niggles," Ryan said. "We have to be smart there, there is a bigger picture for the All Blacks. We don't want to flog them.

    "Steve (Hansen) and the All Blacks coaches will want them fresh for the series, so we want to give everyone an opportunity in the 23 to play against the Lions."

    That's interesting. I wonder if they decided that the best decision from a national perspective is to actually just keep the foot on the throat.

    I think if that is the thinking it is definitely sound. If the Lions lose again the whole tour might implode with infighting and despair. Losing can create a vicious spiral, especially in a team that is not closely knit to begin with.

    Besides, the All Black Crusaders can play 80 mins against the Lions and then take a rest (or play limited minutes) against Samoa.



  • @MiketheSnow Hogg aside, is that the first choice backline? How about the wings?



  • @Tim said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @MiketheSnow Hogg aside, is that the first choice backline? How about the wings?

    Trying to guess what's going on in Gatland's mind, I think he believes that the backline selected for the Crusaders match is the shadow Test backline (including the subs).

    I would rather see a full firing Hogg over Halfpenny but the reality is Halfpenny rarely has a howler, is one of the best kickers in the game, and despite his diminutive size is made of tougher stuff than Hogg. Hogg will be given every chance to stake his claim.

    North is an out and out winger and proven Lions series winner. Had a good end to the domestic season. Can also slip into the centre if necessary.

    It looks like it's a gunfight between L Williams and Watson for the other wing spot. Both players can cover full back. Yesterday's brain farts by Williams are not isolated incidents and for that reason I would have Daly in the mix to make it a three way fight. Daly can also play centre and fullback.

    Gatland likes hard, straight running from his midfield and Te'o and Davies fit the bill.

    That means Farrell shuffling in one to 10. But to be fair Sexton just isn't on form.

    If the direct apporach isn't working, then on comes Sexton, Farrell to 12 and either Te'o or Davies off.

    Murray is the incumbent at 9, but he'll have to improve on his end of season performances where he was largely annonymous.



  • @MiketheSnow Good summation Mike. I am hoping against all hope that both Hogg and Murray come good - I'm more worried about Murray TBH as Halfpenny is, as you say a bloody good backup.

    Williams is a funny one (and not just the way he walks). He runs some great lines and has a good eye for a break but to me he just does not instil the confidence that you get from a North or a Daly. I would like to see one creative or pacey centre at least but I'm resigned to the fact this is unlikely to occur. Biggest is best in Gatlandworld.

    Back row will be interesting with the easier questions being who is not in contention rather than who is. I see Haskell and O'Mahoney as being the also rans here.



  • @Chris-B. @No-Quarter @SammyC You Sader fans are getting ahead of yourselves. You have to make the final first. 🙂



  • @Catogrande said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    @MiketheSnow Good summation Mike. I am hoping against all hope that both Hogg and Murray come good - I'm more worried about Murray TBH as Halfpenny is, as you say a bloody good backup.

    Williams is a funny one (and not just the way he walks). He runs some great lines and has a good eye for a break but to me he just does not instil the confidence that you get from a North or a Daly. I would like to see one creative or pacey centre at least but I'm resigned to the fact this is unlikely to occur. Biggest is best in Gatlandworld.

    Back row will be interesting with the easier questions being who is not in contention rather than who is. I see Haskell and O'Mahoney as being the also rans here.

    Cheers.
    I really like Joseph and we may see Davies to 12 and Joseph at 13 at some stage.

    Yes you can see why Liam Williams is heading to Saracens. His skill, pace & heart are not in question. But he's a maverick / loose canon depending on which side of the fence you sit 🙂

    Either Warburton is being wrapped in cotton wool or he's taken a setback to his recovery. I think it's the former.

    So it's Moriarty, Stander and O'Brien vying for the 6 shirt.

    Tipuric will be on the bench to inject pace and tempo. And Itoje can go to 6 if necessary.



  • @taniwharugby said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    So is Seta only seen as a wing now?

    No. But he is probably seen as the 2nd best centre in the team.....



  • Noticeable point re: Lions selection - so far Gatland has been selecting and replacing his front rows as whole units.

    Vunipola-George-Furlong
    McGrath-Owens-Cole
    Marler-Best-Sinkler



  • @SimonAdd_2 said in Crusaders vs B&I Lions:

    Noticeable point re: Lions selection - so far Gatland has been selecting and replacing his front rows as whole units.

    Vunipola-George-Furlong
    McGrath-Owens-Cole
    Marler-Best-Sinkler

    Yes. Which smacks of Lancaster style subbing by numbers.



  • @ACT-Crusader was more wondering about whether he or Goodhue could move to 12 instead of Havilli



  • @MiketheSnow Saw somewhere Warburton is nursing an ankle injury.


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