Ministry of Sport

Crusaders To Keep Name Following Christchurch Mosque Attack Review

New Zealand’s Super Rugby club, the Crusaders, have decided to keep their name, following a review after the Christchurch mosque attack in March that saw 51 people die.

Following the attack, there were concerns raised over the club’s name association with historic religious wars between Christians and Muslims, but the club has said the name, Crusaders, stands for crusading for social improvement and inclusiveness.

From the review however, the club has decided to stop the use of its knight and sword logo, in a statement, the club said it is seeking to reclaim its meaning through a new brand.

Crusaders chief executive, Colin Mansbridge, said it was decided no name better represents the club’s commitment to living its values, crusading for social improvement and inclusiveness, and crusading with heart for the community.

“When we took a thorough and honest look into who we are, the imagery we were using, with its nod to Christchurch’s English heritage, did not effectively portray the region we represent or who we are as a team,” Mr Mansbridge said.

“We couldn’t find anything that we were trying to do and how we are trying to connect with our community better than the name we have.

“We believe that the logo we have launched today is a much more fitting representation for this team, organisation and its supporters.

“When questions were raised after the 15th of March, we were shell-shocked, as was the whole community, and we were horrified our identity was connected to that event.

“It’s contrary to everything we stand for.

“As much as we thought we might not have liked it, we had to acknowledge the association had been made so it was time to go back to our DNA, our core of who we were.

“We are the Crusaders, but we have evolved, we are committed to being Crusaders for good and for this community, just as we have always been, and we’ve got a brand that we think reflects that,” he said.

The new logo the Crusaders unveiled, ‘The Tohu’, which will not feature on the player’s jerseys until 2021 when Super Rugby re-launches as a 14-team competition, is shaped by the natural landscape in the Crusaders region, the Crusaders said in a statement.

Joshua Hodson

Joshua Hodson