Super Rugby

Lions catch a break as Crusaders rest star duo

Matt Todd (Gallo Images)
Matt Todd (Gallo Images)

Cape Town - Scott Barrett and Matt Todd have been given an extended break by Crusaders coach Scott Robertson

According to the Stuff website's Robert van Royen, the pair will tack their second - and final - All Blacks rest week onto the team's just completed bye, meaning the Crusaders will be without two more frontline forwards against the Lions in Christchurch on Friday.

Kick-off is at 09:35 SA time.

Tighthead prop Owen Franks had already been ruled out of the rematch of the last two finals due to a nagging shoulder injury, which is expected to be re-scanned in the next fortnight. 

Otherwise, the reigning champions are expected to have everyone available for the Round 11 match, including hooker Codie Taylor and wing George Bridge.

Both played a full part in the team's extended training session at Rugby Park on Monday, and assistant coach Brad Mooar confirmed they were good to go.

Taylor missed the team's previous two games with a calf niggle, while Bridge hasn't been sighted since injuring his knee/hamstring against the Waratahs in Round 6. 

There was plenty of zip about the Crusaders' first post-bye training session, with the coaching staff running more sets than they usually would to start a game week.

With Barrett and Todd, who earlier sat out games against the Waratahs and Chiefs respectively, off for the week, lock Luke Romano and openside flank Billy Harmon were heavily involved ahead of Wednesday's team naming.

The Lions' 23-17 victory over the Chiefs on Saturday saw them jump to second in the South African Conference and fifth in the Overall log.

The Crusaders meanwhile are sitting pretty atop both the New Zealand Conference and the Overall standings.