Carter moved to inside centre

2012-04-12 09:02

Christchurch - All Blacks playmaker Dan Carter starts at inside centre for the first time in seven years when the Crusaders take on the unbeaten Stormers in a round-eight Super Rugby clash in Christchurch on Saturday.

Carter last started in the No 12 jersey outside Andrew Mehrtens against the Waratahs in Sydney in 2005, but says he envisages no transitional problems shifting out from his usual five-eighth spot.

Rookie Tom Taylor will wear the No 10 jersey and assume goal-kicking responsibilities after Carter, recently back after a long lay-off with a groin injury, missed three penalty goals in the two-point loss to the Bulls in Pretoria last weekend.

Playing two specialist five-eighths will give the Crusaders left-foot (Carter) and right-foot (Taylor) kicking options, while Carter's midfield presence will also shore up a defence which will need to be at its best to contain the forceful Stormers pairing of Jean de Villiers and Juan de Jongh.

"They are both great ball carriers, so it's really important that defensively we are on our game," Carter said.

"They've shown what a great defensive side they are so, when they do get opportunities with ball in hand, we've got to make sure our defence is sound as well."

Carter says he's happy to hand over goalkicking duties to Taylor while he works on strengthening his groin.

"Each week, it's feeling a bit better, but the groin is still a little tight. Tom is an excellent goalkicker and it gives me a little more time to rehab the groin and get some power and strength there."

Coach Todd Blackadder has made three changes to the team who lost to the Bulls. Ben Franks comes into the front row for his propping brother, Owen, and the taller Tom Donnelly gets the nod over Luke Romano at lock.

Taylor's selection is at the expense of Ryan Crotty.

Stormers coach Allister Coetzee wants his team to lift their effort at the set piece and breakdowns against the seven-time champions, who are six places and nine points behind the visiting South Africans.

"They've got a quality tight five and are technically sound in all departments," Coetzee said.

The Stormers have a dismal record against the Crusaders, with only four wins in 17 matches. The Crusaders have won five of the past six including two wins in Cape Town last year, the second being 29-10 in the semi-final.


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, 7 Matt Todd, 6 George Whitelock, 5 Samuel 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

15 Johan Pietersen, 14 Gerhard van den Heever, 13 Juan de Jongh, 12 Jean de Villiers (captain), 11 Bryan Habana, 10 Peter Grant, 9 Dewaldt Duvenage, 8 Duane Vermeulen, 7 Rynhardt Elstadt, 6 Siya Kolisi, 5 Andries Bekker, 4 Eben Etzebeth, 3 Brok Harris, 2 Tiaan Liebenberg, 1 Steven Kitshoff

Substitutes: 16 Deon Fourie, 17 Frans Malherbe, 18 De Kock Steenkamp, 19 Nizaam Carr, 20 Louis Schreuder, 21 Burton Francis, 22 Gio Aplon

Rugby Heaven

  • Grant - 2012-04-12 09:14

    Big call to move Carter to 12....most interesting indeed! Very unexpected, by all accounts Carter was surprised as well....Interesting that Crusaders making changes to counter Stormers threats, a sure sign that they taking us very seriously and see us as the real deal contender ! Nice !!

      Eugene Walters - 2012-04-12 09:28

      what a move

      Jason - 2012-04-12 09:34

      Thats the worst thing they could do. 7 years he has been at he will have Tiaan and Eben running at him all day. Stormers will take this one!

      Papa-storm - 2012-04-12 09:55

      i have no problem with tiaan and ysterbeth running at him all day

      John - 2012-04-12 10:49

      Carter can play anywhere he is the best footballer in the world. I think they are looking to put their back 3 into space & that spells trouble regardless of how good our defense is. We are going to have to look at a more attacking game & score some tries. Taylor may be a weak link and JDV can have a crack at Taylor/Carter channel. I don't know and can only hope we do not come unstuck.

      patrickjasoncawood - 2012-04-12 11:00

      Why such a big call? sure they will rotate positions during the game. Most teams would kill to have Carter at 12 They just know that every point at goal will count so cant afford to miss any. Stormers seem to struggle big time against the Crusaders. Going to be epic

      Japjapjap - 2012-04-12 11:46

      @jason"oros"eye- "Stormers will take this one.." hahaha, you are def family of sakie?? maybe his young, big brother?? or sister??

  • Saffa - 2012-04-12 09:26

    I reckon this is because (as was pretty evident last Saturday in Pta) that Carter is not quite yet 100% there in terms of his groin injury. The Saders want to play for they do.....and Carter is obviously not 100% comfortable with ANY kicking at the moment. Whether place kicking or our of hand kicking, is was clear the man is still struggling a little. I dunno...just my 2 cents. Rather a Taylor who can at least kick for territory without fluidity, than a Dan who who can't even fully extend that kicking leg yet? But they do need him on the field as a playmaker from 12......and his defence has always been good so I see no issues with him in that channel. Stormers SHOULD try to use this though.....

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 09:27

      Ooooops, menat to say: Rather a Taylor who can kick for territory WITH fluidity, than a Dan Carter who can't even extend his leg fully, cos the groin hurts (from what I have seen)

      Jason - 2012-04-12 09:43

      Morning Saffa, I think this may prove costly for them. Dan is a professional but in the heat of battle with the Stormers attacking their line he may get caught out of his defense channel! Does a team really need this kind of upset against the Stormers? Im not sure! sounds a little desperate to me! Good for us though. Stormers 4 life!

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 09:55

      @Jasoneye - I think Toddy B is under huge pressure here - huge. This is a MUST win for the Saders. A season changing win (from their point of view). He has to throw the dice here - Dan as a playmaker has to be on the field......BUT: risky as all hell playing 10, when the Saders focus is territory (and old Dan is NOT comfortable kicking at all) - OR: this could me mind games a la Toddy - lol. Whatever it is, it means the Saders are under some pressure. (Makes them helluva dangerous IMHO)

      Lance - 2012-04-12 10:21

      Carter had better get his groin rubbed full of Deep-heat to dull the pain of the strain as his explosivness will not be there to stop the side-steps of de Jonge/de Villiers' in mid-field...

      kboomgaard - 2012-04-12 10:36

      Lance you do know that you're thinking like a jack-ass ... NEVER underestimate the Crusaders ... They aren't the 7 times title holders for nothing ... \r\n\r\nLook what they've done to the Stormers last season ... Not once but twice at Newlands and that without Carter , McCaw or any star players and on the move every weekend due to them having NO HOME GROUNG ADVANTAGE ... \r\n\r\nSo all of you ... Please don't be arrogant enough to think this will be a walk in the park for the Stormers especially since they have yet to win a title in this tournament ... They couldn't do it in Super 10 , 12 , 14 and 15 is still very much PENDING ...\r\n\r\nA Super Weekend to all !!!!!!!

      Jason - 2012-04-12 10:40

      @Lance................a little to descriptive on the groin rubbing me thinks? bwahahahahah!

      Lance - 2012-04-12 10:49

      @ Jason, pun intended, Deep-heat aint fun down there ;-) @kboombabe...if you think that playing with a mild injury at this level against a world class pairing of de Jonge/de Villiers isnt stupid then you should question your thought patterns. It wont be an easy game as the Saders are a great side indeed, but shifting Carter out of place with a mild injury is looking for trouble in mid-field. PS: A groin strain means that a player's agility is impaired. (Sorry if I offended anyone with my logical reasoning)

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 10:50

      Lance,slowly there buddy,all that talk about rubbing and groins will wake and excite the folk from up North:):) Howzit Jason,Saffa,all ok???

      Jason - 2012-04-12 10:53

      Morning Lionel................all rosy thanks! looking forward to a cracker weekend of Rugga!

      kboomgaard - 2012-04-12 11:01

      Lance its quite obvious you don't know the logistics of how the Crusaders team works so you probably wouldn't understand ... No use explaining as you have a one track mind ... Get your heads outta the gutters boys !!!!!

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 11:01

      @Jason,I am also looking forward to this game big time....if ever there is a chance to beat the Saders in NZ then this has to be it..Stormers by 4!!!

      Lance - 2012-04-12 11:10

      @ Kaboombabe....its quite obvious you "dont understand the logistics" of how a backline works...or might not work for the Saders when a hop-along Carter takes on solid and fit mid centre Stormers pairing. The chirps here are all in good fun and anyone here who comments here regularly should know that..

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 11:34

      @Kaboomgard - I don't see anyone 'bad mouthing' the Saders? In fact, all I am reading is respect all round? A few comments made in jest does not detract from the global respect this team deserves? Don't be precious now......

  • Lance - 2012-04-12 09:44

    Getting Carter to hop along in mid-field with a mild groin strain doesnt sound like a clever move for the Saders..Play for territory..kick where you want..Joe "Jack Russel' Pietersen will be there ready to catch, dart..dip and SCORE ! Go Stormers !

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 12:20

      All those Thumb Downers are from the folk up North,they think Zane Kirchner is a talent!!!

      Lance - 2012-04-12 12:21

      @ the "thumbs downers"...Joe Pietersen is playing awesone rugby right now and is literally knocking at the Bok door....

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 12:33

      Since Joe has come back from France his game has improved immensely,if the Boks are not going to play Lambie at 15 then surely Joe stands a great chance!!!

      Lance - 2012-04-12 12:38

      @ the very least he should make the bench as he can cover wing too..Strange he never chose scrumhalf as his first choice position, he would have been good there too..

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 12:39

      @Lionel, the Sharks (as per usual) are stuffing up a supremely talented player: Lambie. I will say for the 10000000000000000th time, he is a 15 and not a 10 (and Steyn, Goosen and Jantjies are ahead of him on the pecking order IMHO). I know some say he is too slow for a 15 - but I don't buy into that sentiment 100%. If the kid wants to become a specialist ANYTHING, it will have to be at 15, because at the moment he is running the risk of losing out alltogether on a starting Bok place - in ANY position. Another jack of all trades and master of none a la Pienaar, Russell........ He is TOO talented to deserve that fate.

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 12:47

      @Lance,if I am not mistaken he played 10 for the Stormers before,maybe from the bench??? @Saffa,you think Meyer will have a say where to play Lambie???We all know what happened last year when Divvy tried to intervene with the Smit/Bissie issue!!!!

  • Stormkaap - 2012-04-12 09:45

    This stormers side looks better than when Rassie coached them.. just saying

      Heiku - 2012-04-12 09:53

      You're a chop. Just saying.

      patrickjasoncawood - 2012-04-12 11:02

      When did Rassie coach the Stormers?

      Deon - 2012-04-12 11:07

      They have a habit of looking better in the first part of the seaon but then they fall apart. Let us hope they proof me wrong. Should the Stormers slip a game or 2 and Bulls improve they might be swopping places on the log.

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 11:09

      @Deon - very possible that the Bulls will overtake the Stormers for a while, but then the Bulls go on tour :) Hehehehehehe.

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 11:25

      Saffa,can you remember that attempted run out of his pathway/tackle on SBW by meisiekind last year,Bulls vs Saders when they got klapped 27-0!!!!That was classic!!!

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 11:33

      @Lionel - Meisie didn't miss that tackle.....he happened to slip - and he said that, so it must be true - hehehehehehehhehehehehe. And the funny thing is: If the Stormers lose by 3, the haters will be telling us we were massacred - hehehehehe.

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 11:53

      @Blueraven - to sort of quote you, "that was quite a few years ago, and we have already played you this year and won"...........

      Lionel - 2012-04-12 11:59

      Raven,atleast we put on 14 points,you put on zilch,zero,nought,nadder,think you get the point and by the way that was in our building stage,as you like to put it!! Saffa,was that his excuse,how could I have missed that,probably LMAO at that poor attempt!!!

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 12:18

      @Raven - do you watch Game of Thrones? If so, did you watch the sneak premiere of the new series? If you did, let me throw up one of the classic's from the episode: Arrogant Lannister chap(you) to the Starke chap (me): "3 Victories does not make you a conqueror". Starke chap to arrogant Lannister twat: "No it doesn't - but it's better than 3 defeats".

      Saffa - 2012-04-12 12:36

      Nah - your quote doesn't have the same effect or drama as mine.......(be honest...would you prefer the Bulls to be unbeaten at this stage or not?) Have a great day - tis glorious here and time for some outdoor activity - read: beach toe. Enjoy.

  • heinrich.beukes1 - 2012-04-12 11:39

  • legndkilla - 2012-04-12 12:07

    nt saying the crusaders are no good, but the fact that they shuffling around players should signal alarm bells ringing as they are aware that the stormers could potentially beat them on ther own turf!!

  • Abie - 2012-04-12 13:35

    Not the correct decision Tod. If Dan cannot play in his position because of his groin injury, then he must be left out of the team or sit on the bench but I will not complain if the Saders win.

  • Marius - 2012-04-12 15:40

    I reckon it is to recreate what Frans Steyn did at the past WC, also a very clever move tactically, to spread the ball to the wings at a faster pace, nulifying the stormers defense system where habanna breaks the line, to put pressure on the opposing centers, causing the ball to not reach the wing. Never underestimate, the Crusaders, or Dan Carter.....

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