Fergus Burke returns for Crusaders in must-win clash with Brumbies

The Crusaders welcomed back five-eighth Fergus Burke for their Round 13 decider against the Brumbies in Canberra.

The 24-year-old was named to start in the No. 10 shirt in his first appearance of the season after suffering an Achilles injury and will partner young full-back Noah Hotham in the starting line-up.

Outside of Burke, the midfield is a new combination of David Havili and 21-year-old John Roffa. Sipho Rees, Chai Vihaki and Johnny McNichol make up the outside backs.

Up front, All Black Joe Moody is set to return to the starting line-up and will be joined by All Blacks teammate Fletcher Newell and Cody Taylor, who retains the captaincy while Scott Barrett remains sidelined.

Barrett's absence also makes room for Antonio Chalfon, who made his debut last week, to start alongside Quentin Strange.

Ethan Blackadder remains sidelined with a thigh injury, allowing Tom Christie to return to the starting lineup in his familiar No. 7 shirt. Christie is joined by Colin Grace and Christian Leo Wille up front.

With the defending champions sitting in 11th place with just three rounds remaining until the playoffs, beating the third-placed Brumbies is a must to keep their season alive.

Three competitive points separate the Crusaders from the Fiji club, which is ranked eighth on the table. Following this week's lineup, the Cantabrians will face the Blues and Moana Pacifica to complete the season.

Crusaders team to face Brumbies

  1. Joe Moody
  2. Cody Taylor (c)
  3. Fletcher Newell
  4. Antonio Chalfon
  5. Quentin Strange
  6. Colin Grace
  7. Tom Christie
  8. Christian Leo Willy
  9. Noah Hotham
  10. Fergus Burke
  11. Sifu Reese
  12. David Haveley
  13. John Roffa
  14. Vihaki tea
  15. Johnny MacNicol


16. George Bell
17. George Bauer
18. Seb Calder
19. Jimmy Hannah
20. Dom Gardiner
21. Mitch Drummond
22. Rihanna Reeves
23. Maka Springer


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