Highlanders v Crusaders

  • Highlanders

    1 Ayden Johnstone
    2 Liam Coltman
    3 Tyrel Lomax
    4 Josh Dickson
    5 Jack Whetton
    6 Shannon Frizell
    7 James Lentjes
    8 Luke Whitelock (cc)
    9 Aaron Smith
    10 Josh Ioane
    11 Richard Buckman
    12 Teihorangi Walden
    13 Patelesio Tomkinson
    14 Waisake Naholo
    15 Ben Smith (cc)

    16 Ash Dixon
    17 Daniel Lienert-Brown
    18 Siate Tokolahi
    19 Tom Franklin
    20 Elliot Dixon
    21 Dillon Hunt
    22 Folau Fakatava
    23 Marty Banks

    Unavailable due to injury: Tevita Nabura (knee - season), Liam Squire (hip), Rob Thompson (ankle)

    Pulse Energy Highlanders Head Coach, Aaron Mauger, has largely stuck with the side that took on the Hurricanes last week with changes made for the two players that left the field with concussion injuries; Teihorangi Walden comes in for Thomas Umaga-Jensen and Jack Whetton for Pari Pari Parkinson. Shannon Frizell is in for the hard-working Jackson Hemopo and Tevita Li slips out of the 23 while Waisake Naholo returns to his right-wing spot. Siate Tokolahi is restored to the bench which will have a 6:2 forward/back split.  Folau Fakatava and Marty Banks will cover the backs while openside flankers Dillon Hunt and James Lentjes are included in the same 23 for the first time this season.


  • Great to see they've dropped Hammington and Li!

    A 6-2 split on the bench; interesting.

  • Interesting they’ve gone the 6:2 bench. Plenty of versatility in that side but basically banking on no back injuries and Ioane stepping it up to play 80

  • That's a very strong team.

    Crusaders winning streak vs Highlanders home winning streak.

    Should be great viewing under the roof.

  • Crusaders

    1 George Bower
    2 Codie Taylor
    3 Owen Franks
    4 Scott Barrett
    5 Sam Whitelock (C)
    6 Jordan Taufua
    7 Matt Todd (VC)
    8 Whetukamokamo Douglas
    9 Bryn Hall
    10 Richie Mo'unga
    11 George Bridge
    12 Ryan Crotty (VC)
    13 Jack Goodhue
    14 Braydon Ennor
    15 David Havili

    16 Andrew Makalio
    17 Harry Allan
    18 Michael Alaalatoa
    19 Quinten Strange
    20 Tom Sanders
    21 Ereatara Enari
    22 Brett Cameron
    23 Will Jordan


  • Great to see Ere Enari ahead of Drummond. Thought his passing looked sharp last week.

  • Highlanders 45-31!!!!! 🙂

  • Li finally gone, only to be tempered by no Thompson, as well as fucking Lentjes starting ahead of Hunt again.

    Shithot crusaders team too. Marty to win it with a drop goal.

  • Who is George Bower and is he any good?

  • @ShadowTrooper said in Highlanders v Crusaders:

    Who is George Bower and is he any good?

    A Fijian (Wellington-born) prop who played for Otago in 2017 and 2018 (he studied in Dunedin), although he wasn't named in their initial squad (both years). He made his SR debut off the bench last week.

  • I think that’s our best starting backline.

    Whetu Douglas is having a great start to the season and with Todd back and S. Whitelock, it could open his game up a little bit more.

  • @ACT-Crusader Will be interesting if it is still the best backline at the end of the season.

    Havili vs Jordan will be interesting, and Ennor vs Reece.

  • @ACT-Crusader said in Highlanders v Crusaders:

    I think that’s our best starting backline.

    Agree, Havili still starts over Jordan in the tough games I reckon. He’s a safer option on defense.

  • Havili is pretty staunch in defence and his time in the midfield I think has helped him be a better defender as a fullback.

    Jordan is skilful and quick and his time will come.

  • Anyone care to bet when (not if) we'll see Jordan, Bridge and Ennor together in an ABs backline?

  • @shark Stealing @ACT-Crusader 's thunder here, but why not

    9 Enari 10 Mo'unga 11 Bridge, 12 Havili, 13 Goodhue, 14 Ennor and 15 Jordan?

  • @shark Ioane will have to be injured for that to happen.

  • @Stargazer said in Highlanders v Crusaders:

    @shark Stealing @ACT-Crusader 's thunder here, but why not

    9 Enari 10 Mo'unga 11 Bridge, 12 Havili, 13 Goodhue, 14 Ennor and 15 Jordan?

    Are we playing Japan midweek again?

  • Even though he is injured and not playing - I 'd just like to say I'm really getting sick of NZ media describe Liam Squire as the All Black enforcer.
    That is all.

  • @Frank said in Highlanders v Crusaders:

    Even though he is injured and not playing - I 'd lust like to say I'm really getting sick of NZ media describe Liam Squire as the All Black enforcer.
    That is all.

    He's in charge of team fines.

  • @Bones enforcing the team’s food bill

  • Can anyone please tell me if the Junior Ratuva
    Named on the wing for the Crusader Knights to play the curtain raiser tomorrow
    Is the same player who signed for the Melbourne storm for 2 years straight out of Kings college in 2017

  • Crusaders Knights team to play Highlanders Bravehearts:

    1. Isi Tu'ungafasi RESERVES
    2. Ben Funnell 16. Brodie McAlister
    3. Oliver Jager 17. Chris Gawler
    4. Will Tucker 18. Sam Matenga
    5. Michael Curry 19. Josh Bokser
    6. Billy Harmon 20. Hugh Renton
    7. Tom Christie 21. Connor McManus
    8. Ethan Blackadder 22. Alex Harford
    9. Mitchell Drummond 23. Zach McKay
    10. Tim Bateman
    11. Junior Ratuva
    12. Inga Finau
    13. Tuli Paea
    14. Sevu Reece
    15. Jamie Spowart

  • Reports that the game is being cancelled.

  • Not sure how I feel about that.

  • I would have watched. If the players didn't want to play then fair enough I suppose.

  • NZR Statement:

    Tonight's Highlanders v Crusaders Investec Super Rugby fixture scheduled to be played at Dunedin's Forsyth Barr Stadium has been cancelled.
    New Zealand Rugby's Chief Rugby Officer Nigel Cass said the decision to cancel the match was made after urgent meetings today with both teams, venue management, police and community organisations involved in responses to yesterday’s terrorist attacks in Christchurch.
    “After consulting widely with both teams and key stakeholders, New Zealand Rugby has decided to cancel this evening’s match. 
    “Advice from police and venue management was that the fixture could go ahead, however, with strong agreement from both teams we have made the final call not to proceed as a mark of respect for the events that have occurred in Christchurch."
    Crusaders CEO Colin Mainsbridge said their entire club community was in a state of shock.
    “Yesterday’s horrific attacks have left us all feeling stunned. All other issues and considerations pale in significance. We will now regroup and make arrangements for the team to return home as soon as possible to be back in their community and with their families.”
    Highlanders CEO Roger Clark said they were working to communicate with ticketholders and fans.
    “This is always the biggest fixture on our match calendar and one which our fans look forward to, but when we think about the massive loss of life and absolute devastation that has been wreaked on people in Christchurch, we feel this is the right decision.
    “For ticketholders refunds will be processed over the next three weeks further information will be available through ticketrocket.co.nz.”
    The Highlanders team has met today and all players have been advised to go home and be with their families.


  • Given that the initial target was in Dunedin, this makes some sense.

  • I respect their decision to cancel, I would have applauded a decision to continue.

  • As it was the players decision I think it's the right decision.

  • I totally agree with the decision. Not only does it show respect for the victims, their families and local community, but I expect it's also important to the Crusaders players on a more personal level. Many of them have young kids and their schools may have been in lock-down yesterday. They'll want to be with their families, esp. their kids, give them a cuddle and talk with them about what happened. They also have strong ties to the local community and may want to connect with them as well, just like they did after the big earthquake. Those things are just more important than what's, ultimately, only a game of rugby.

  • I'm bummed because it is usually a high quality fixture but you've got to respect that decision.

  • While I understand the decision, and it’s theres to make, I lean towards carrying on as normal. One of the goals of these sorts of attacks is to change how we live.

    Like how we should never name these cowards, we shouldn’t change a damn thing about how we live as a society.

  • Easiest 2 points we'll get off the Crusaders!🙂

    Too soon?

  • My every sympathy for the players involved. They were in a no-win situation here. Go ahead with the game and some people somewhere would have accused them of insensitivity. Cancel and others would accuse them of being cowards. Neither choice was easy.

    For what's its worth IMHO for 24 to 48 hours after terrorist attacks it is right to stop and the entire focus of communities affected to be with the victims and supporting the emergency services, as well as beginning to make sense of what happened. Rugby is just a game after all.

    Then after that it's back to being the open, open-minded, fun-loving, busy societies we are. The terrorists and fascists must never win.

    I hope schools in the South Island are open as normal on Monday.

  • @sparky is anyone calling them cowards though?

  • I understand the Decision. I live in chch, love the Highlanders and work in Education and have kids in school, I'm shattered emotionally today! The effects of this event will shape the young generation of chch which cannot be understated, many already struggled to a degree that I don't thi k NZ understand this. Thoughts with the families who lost loved ones.

  • @Crazy-Horse said in Highlanders v Crusaders:

    @sparky is anyone calling them cowards though?

    Absolutely nobody is.

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