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McCaw returns for all-Kiwi grand final qualifier

CRUSADERS flanker and All Blacks skipper Richie McCaw will make a timely return from a rib injury to face the Sharks in tomorrow night's Super Rugby semi-final in Christchurch.

Jordan Taufua will move to the bench.

Corey Flynn will take the starting hooker's spot for his 150th Crusaders game, with Ben Funnell providing back-up from the bench.

The Crusaders finished the season second on the points table, while the Sharks beat the Highlanders in a quarter-final last weekend.

Crusaders coach Todd Blackadder said his team had been preparing for its toughest game yet, with a grand final berth on the line.

"The Sharks have shown this season that they are an extremely classy outfit. This is our biggest challenge, but we feel ready for it," he said.

The Sharks beat the Crusaders 30-25 at the same venue in May.

Topics:  richie mccaw super rugby