Crusaders set to make changes following Christchurch attack

Section
News,
Publish Date
Thursday, 28 March 2019, 8:45AM
Getty Images
Getty Images

The Crusaders are set to ditch the sword-wielding knights used in their pre-match entertainment for their first home game of the season since the terrorist attacks in Christchurch.

While still not yet confirmed, Crusaders boss Colin Mansbridge told Stuff the knights on horses are "unlikely" to be used for the April 6 clash with the Brumbies at Christchurch stadium.

"For this particular game, given it's the first game since the terrorist attack, the horses are unlikely to be there," Mansbridge said. "It's not unequivocal yet, but they're unlikely to be there and the game will reflect the occasion."

Historically, the crusades were a series of religious and political wars between Christians and Muslims fought in the 11th and 13th centuries.

The Crusaders' team name and imagery, which some say evoke those wars, has sparked controversy with many calling it offensive and insensitive, especially after the targeted killings in Christchurch.

Mansbridge said the Super Rugby franchise is working hard on the issue but is unsure about what should be done going forward beyond that first home game.

"We are getting a lot of feedback. You don't have to be too well connected to anything to see how much feedback we're getting," he told Stuff.

"This game will be different than our last game … what we're not sure about is going forward.

"We want to do the right thing ... to make sure that we're doing our best to do the right thing, it's probably taking more energy than we've ever expended on a game."

This article was first published on nzherald.co.nz and is republished here with permission

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