In the wake of the devastating attacks on two mosques in Christchurch on Friday, the teams respective management have taken the decision to call off the fixture. The Crusaders will be returning home to their communities and families as the country mourns the tragedy.
On Friday a gunman whilst live streaming to Facebook, proceeded to two separate mosques during the afternoon prayer session opening fire on the attendees. With over 40 confirmed dead and many others injured the world was in shock.
Numerous New Zealand players took to social media to voice their concerns, support for the victims families and utter shock at what had unfolded. Sonny Bill Williams most notably perturbed by what had unfolded leading the call against these acts.
Although the New Zealand Police and venue management gave the green light for the game to go ahead. The decision to cancel was taken in light of the bigger picture as well as at the request of both teams.
The Cricket match scheduled between New Zealand and Bangladesh was similarly cancelled in light of the attack’s.
This is the second time that a fixture involving the Crusaders has been cancelled. The last time being back in 2011 when their game against the Hurricanes was cancelled. This was due to the 6.3 magnitude earth quake which killed over 100 people.
In the wake of the cancelled match, ticket holders have been offered refunds. Whilst at this stage it is unclear as to how this will effect the points and log. The likely scenario is that the game will be listed as a draw with both teams receiving two log points.
It is not likely that the game will be rescheduled as the Super Rugby season is in full swing and finding space for such a game would be difficult.
Our thoughts and prayers go out to all those affected by this tragedy and especially to the families in mourning.
Written by: Nicholas Halsey