Whitelock confirms move to France

The veteran Crusader and All Black has taken up a two-year deal with Section Pau in the South of France, where he will link up with younger brother Luke who joined the Top 14 club in 2019.

"Hannah, the kids and myself are going to head to France to play with my little brother Luke," Whitelock said.

"I've had the privilege of playing with family for Canterbury, the Crusaders and the All Blacks at different stages and this opportunity was too good to pass up."

Whitelock debuted for Canterbury in 2008 and the Crusaders in 2010.

Joe Moody out for eight weeks

Moody's had ankle surgery after being injured in the side's win over the Blues a fortnight ago.

He'll be out for eight weeks which means he will still be available for the All Blacks World Cup campaign in France in September.

Moody's the fourth prop the Crusaders have lost during their title defence.

The Super Rugby Pacific side has already lost Fletcher Newell, George Bower and Finlay Brewis to injuries.

The Crusaders hope to add another prop to their roster in the near future.

34 year old Moody missed much of last season with an ACL injury.

Crusaders blunt Blues' attacking weapons in hard-fought victory

The first half was a physical arm wrestle with both sides held scoreless for the first 29 minutes.

The Crusaders broke through for their opening try from Quinten Strange on the half hour mark with plenty of power and work from CodieTaylor in the set-up.

The first chance for points for the Blues came from the boot of Beauden Barrett who slotted a penalty.

With points hard to come by, the home side took the three as Richie Mo'unga converted a penalty before the half-time break.

The Crusaders held a narrow 10-3 lead heading into the changing sheds.

All Black set for Crusaders milestone in crunch clash with rivals Blues

With the race for a top four spot in the playoffs heating up, this weekend’s clash between the two New Zealand rivals means even more.

Defending champions the Crusaders, who beat the Blues in a tight tussle earlier in the season, will host the competitions third-ranked side at Orangetheory Stadium, Christchurch, on Saturday.

The Crusaders are fourth, and risk falling behind the Hurricanes and into fifth on the ladder if they fail to beat the Blues.

All Black returns for Crusaders’ clash with undefeated Chiefs

After losing the opening match of the season 31-10 to the Chiefs in Christchurch, the Crusaders have a chance to avenge that defeat in round 10.

Coach Scott Robertson has made three changes to the run-on XV, while Sam Whitelock has also been named for his 350th first-class appearance.

Replacement Quinten Strange is also in line for his 50th appearance in a Crusaders jersey, as he looks to provide some impact off the bench at FMG Stadium.

Scott Barrett and Sam Whitelock set to return for Crusaders

All Blacks Barrett and Whitelock have both been named to return this week, and will pack down alongside each other in the second row.

Barrett will captain the side in his first Super Rugby Pacific appearance since the win over the Reds in Brisbane last month, while Whitelock returns to competitive rugby following a lengthy stint on the sidelines.

Whitelock injured his hand during the thrilling 34-28 win over the Blues at Eden Park in round three, but has been included as one of seven changes to the starting XV.

Crusaders to spend spare time studying 'frontrunners' Chiefs

The Crusaders are back in action this Friday after a bye and shaky win over Moana Pasifika the prior week - a game assistant coach James Marshall conceded has been like their season to date.

"I thought we sort of scraped through it really, we didn't hit out straps," Marshall said of the first half the season.

"I thought maybe the Blues [a tight 34-28 win] was our best game of the year so far but other than that I thought a lot was pretty messy.

Moana Pasifika come close to spoiling Mounga’s party

With an early penalty by Mounga and a try to hooker Codie Taylor, the home team looked to be cruising. However, Moana found their way back into the game with in-form centre Levi Aumua crossing for two tries, giving them a 14-10 lead. 

Tagata Pasifika reports Taylor secured another try for the Crusaders pushing out their lead to 17-14. 

But it didn’t last long for the home team, as Timoci Tamatamanawai scored in the corner just before half time, edging the visitors ahead. The try was converted by Lincoln McClutchie, giving Moana a 21-17 lead at the break. 

Crusaders beat spirited Moana Pasifika after trailing at half-time

The All Blacks first-five Richie Mo'unga played a big hand in his 100th match for the Crusaders by converting all five of his side's tries and nailing a penalty.

Moana Pasifika scored three tries to the Crusaders two in the first half to take a 21-17 lead at half time.

Codie Taylor crossed the line twice for the home side, while Levi Aumua also scored a double in the first 40 minutes for Moana Pasifika.

Fainga'anuku leads Crusaders to bonus point win over Brumbies

The blockbusting wing scored a hat-trick against the Blues at Eden Park last night and his double for the defending champions – both from attacking lineouts where his power and pace combined to make him virtually unstoppable – was crucial.

The margin for this five tries to two bonus point victory was clear-cut but it wasn’t as straightforward as the Crusaders would have liked.

Both teams were missing a host of players – the Crusaders’ latest casualties were Sam Whitelock, Sevu Reece and lock Zach Gallagher, the latter replaced on the eve of the match by Dominic Gardiner.