14 Mar 2015

Read, Whitelock, Carter back for Crusaders

12:28 pm on 14 March 2015

Kieran Read and Sam Whitelock will play their first Super Rugby games of the season, while Dan Carter will return from injury when the Crusaders meet the Lions in Christchurch on Saturday.

Kieran Read (L), Sam Whitelock and Dan Carter training.

Kieran Read (L), Sam Whitelock and Dan Carter training. Photo: PHOTOSPORT

Read will start at No.8 and captain the side after being rested for the opening rounds, while Whitelock pairs up with Luke Romano in the second row.

Jordan Taufua will start at blindside flanker, with Richie McCaw moving to his favoured number seven jersey. Owen Franks also returns to the starting front row after serving a two-week suspension.

Carter will play at second five eighth outside Colin Slade, pushing Ryan Crotty out to centre, while Andy Ellis starts at halfback.

Fijian internaitonal Nemani Nadolo will play his first Super Rugby game of 2015 on the wing, with Johnny McNicholl on the other.

David Havili is set to play his debut game for the Crusaders if he comes off the bench.

Crusaders: Tom Taylor, Johnny McNicholl, Ryan Crotty, Dan Carter, Nemani Nadolo, Colin Slade, Andy Ellis, Kieran Read (c), Richie McCaw, Jordan Taufua, Sam Whitelock, Luke Romano, Owen Franks, Ben Funnell, Wyatt Crockett

Reserves: Codie Taylor, Joe Moody, Nepo Laulala, Scott Barrett, Luke Whitelock, Mitchell Drummond, Kieron Fonotia, David Havili