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Twickenham unable to host Crusaders

The Rugby Football Union have told the Crusaders that Twickenham will be unable to stage their Super Rugby match against the Sharks on March 26.

The Christchurch-based franchise had contacted the RFU about moving the fixture to London because the AMI Stadium was damaged in the recent earthquake.

The RFU were anxious to help but concluded the logistical challenges were too great, particularly with neighbours Harlequins playing Gloucester in the Aviva Premiership on the same day.

An RFU spokesman said: "Given we are keen to help support the people of Christchurch as they recover from the dreadful events of the last few weeks this was something we looked at seriously, even given the short time-frames involved.

"Unfortunately in the end it has just not proved possible to do this given the operational challenges involved and in particular the transport, policing and security issues that would arise from the clash with the Harlequins game on the same day less than one mile away.

"We have confirmed this to Crusaders with regret but have offered other dates later in the Super 15 season to continue to offer the hand of rugby friendship to Christchurch and its people."

Wembley confirmed they had not received any approaches from the Crusaders but the stadium would be unavailable anyway, with England playing Ghana in a friendly on March 29.

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