Rugby: Crusaders unchanged for semifinal

Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder has named an unchanged 22-man squad for Saturday's Super Rugby semifinal against the Chiefs in Hamilton.

All Blacks skipper Richie McCaw will once again start on the bench, where he made his first appearance of the season in last weekend's 38-9 qualifying final victory over the Reds.

The two sides have previously met on 21 occasions with the Crusaders winning two-thirds of these encounters and scoring on average nine points more a game than their Waikato counterparts.

However the Chiefs have won the last three of the four encounters and won when it counted, in last year's semifinal, putting an end to the Crusaders title hopes.

More recently the two sides have met on two occasions this season and have come out level pegging with a win a piece. They last met in round nineteen of the competition when the Crusaders came away with emphatic 43-15 win. Since then the Crusaders have hit their straps and have won their last five matches in a row.

Crusaders team to play the Chiefs:
1. Wyatt Crockett, 2. Corey Flynn, 3.

Owen Franks, 4. Luke Romano, 5. Sam Whitelock, 6. George Whitelock, 7. Matt Todd, 8. Kieran Read (c), 9. Andy Ellis, 10. Dan Carter, 11. Zac Guildford, 12. Tom Taylor, 13. Ryan Crotty, 14. Tom Marshall, 15. Israel Dagg. Reserves: 16. Ben Funnell, 17. Joe Moody, 18. Luke Whitelock, 19. Richie McCaw, 20. Willi Heinz, 21. Tyler Bleyendaal, 22. Adam Whitelock.

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