Luke Romano set for 100th Investec Super Rugby cap
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Romano said it was special to join a select group of current and former Crusaders, who have all played an important role in shaping Crusaders rugby.
“It’s a huge honour to play for this team, and I never would have dreamed of reaching 100 games when I made my debut in Timaru seven years ago.
“There’s a fantastic culture within the side that drives you to turn up each and every week and play the best rugby you can for your team mates, coaches, family and supporters. It’s certainly what has driven me to this milestone and I know it’s something special that I’ll look back on with a great deal of pride,” Romano said.
BNZ Crusaders Head Coach Scott Robertson said Romano’s Crusaders team mates were determined to celebrate the milestone with a good performance against the Stormers.
“Luke is a valued member of our team, and has given his all every time he’s taken the field for the Crusaders over the past seven seasons. He had an immense 2017 campaign and was an important part of our success, so I know the boys will want to put a performance befitting this milestone on the field come Saturday night.
“100 Super Rugby games is a real testament to Luke’s character; he’s not only an uncompromising competitor, but is also a loyal Crusaders man and a great leader. It’s a special milestone and one we look forward to celebrating with Luke and his family,” Robertson said.
New Zealand Rugby Chief Executive Steve Tew said: “On behalf of New Zealand Rugby, I’d like to congratulate Luke on reaching this special milestone. He joins a very special club of New Zealand players to reach 100 Super Rugby games, his loyalty to the game is certainly appreciated and he and his family can be rightly proud of everything he has achieved in the Crusaders jersey.”
Born in Nelson, Romano made his first-class debut against his home province, Tasman, for Canterbury back in 2009. Two years later he became Crusader #154 when he made his Super Rugby debut against the Bulls in Timaru. Romano earned his first Test cap the following year against Ireland in Hamilton and has now worn the black jersey on 31 occasions.
Last week, Romano played his 100th Crusaders game, which included his start against the British and Irish Lions in June 2017. On Saturday night, he will become the 18th Crusaders representative to play 100 Super Rugby games, the most of any Super Rugby team in the history of the competition.