Read returns for Saders

Kieran Read will lead the Crusaders when they play their final pre-season match against the Rebels on Saturday.

The game will mark Read’s first since the 2011 World Cup final, and in the absence of Richie McCaw he will assume the Crusaders captaincy. Another All Black in Andy Ellis will make his first start at scrumhalf, while New Zealand tighthead Owen Franks is back in the front row.

Centre Robbie Fruean is being rested while Sean Maitland returns to the wing.

Crusaders – 15 Tom Marshall, 14 Sean Maitland, 13 Adam Whitelock, 12 Tom Taylor, 11 Israel Dagg, 10 Tyler Bleyendaal, 9 Andy Ellis, 8 Kieran Read (c), 7 Matt Todd, 6 George Whitelock, 5 Tom Donnelly, 4 Sam Whitelock, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Quentin MacDonald, 1 Ben Franks.
Subs: 16 Corey Flynn, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Luke Romano, 19 Ross Kennedy, 20 Willie Heinz, 21 James Schrader, 22 Patrick Osborne, 23 Mitch Scott, 24 Joe Wheeler, 25 Brendon O’Connor, 26 Luke Whitelock.