Thursday, April 12, 2012

Dan Carter at second-five against Stormers TONY SMITH 12/04/2012 

Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder says All Black ace Dan Carter's midfield move is only a short-term measure.
Carter, the long-time Crusaders and All Blacks first five-eighth, was today named at second-five for Saturday's Super 15 clash with the unbeaten Stormers at  the new Christchurch Stadium.
Tom Taylor comes in at first-five and will take over the goalkicking from Carter who was off-target last week in the loss to the Bulls in Pretoria.
Carter, 30, played at second-five in his Crusaders debut season in 2002 and when he first made the All Blacks in 2003 but he has not donned the No 12 jersey at Super rugby level  for seven years.
Blackadder said there were several reasons for Carter's move to midfield. 
"I just think it will take a bit of pressure off.
"It's his third game back [since his World Cup groin injury] and it's asking a little bit too much of him to do the goalkicker, be the director, be the voice and do everything.
"We just want him to play.  I see it more as an opportunity rather than a demotion. We've got Tom Taylor who can now do the goalkicking and the other is we put his experience in midfield so he will shore that up.
"It gives us left and right kicker [combination] against the best defensive team in the competition.''
Blackadder said Carter was "an impeccable defender and would stiffen the midfield defence but didn't "envisage Dan staying there for the whole season''. 
"I think it just works right now and I think we'll get the benefits from this move.''
Carter admitted to being "a little bit surprised '' when Blackadder and backs coach Daryl Gibson told him their plan.
But he said he had played a lot  at second five in the past.
"Toddy and Gibbo talked about wanting to have two five-eighths in this game.  In my experience, there's not a lot of difference between the two positions.''
In another key move,  Blackadder has brought in former All Blacks lock Tom Donnelly to partner World Cup second-rower Sam Whitelock with Luke Romano dropping to the bench with the aim of fielding his tallest combination against Stormers giant Andries Bekker.
The Crusaders continue their front row rotation policy with World Cup winner Owen Franks being replaced at tighthead by brother Ben and another All Black, Wyatt Crockett, starting on the loosehead.
Crusaders:  15-Israel Dagg, 14-Sean Maitland, 13-Robbie Fruean, 12-Dan Carter, 11-Zac Guildford, 10-Tom Taylor, 9-Andy Ellis, 8-Kieran Read (capt),  7-Matt Todd, 6-George Whitelock, 5-Sam Whitelock, 4-Tom Donnelly, 3-Ben Franks, 2-Corey Flynn, 1-Wyatt Crockett.  Substitutes:  16-Quentin MacDonald, 17-Owen Franks, 18-Luke Romano, 19-Luke Whitelock, 20-Willi Heinz, 21-Ryan Crotty, 22-Tom Marshall.

No comments: