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Crusaders to hold 'full brand review' after Christchurch terror attack

The knight and sword image is to be removed from the club's logo for next season, the club said.

Christchurch-based Crusaders will retain their name for at least the 2020 season but will undertake a full brand review following a terrorist attack on two mosques in the New Zealand city.

The Super Rugby champions said in the wake of the shootings in March that they could change their name and logo given the connotations of the word crusaders.

After receiving the results of independent research, the club said on Saturday they remained open-minded but would undertake a review to determine whether any changes should be made.

In the meantime, however, the knight and sword image will be removed from the club's logo for next season, a statement said.

"What is clear from the research is that there are divided views on the name itself, but that people on both sides of the divide are incredibly passionate about this club and what it represents to them," said chief executive Colin Mansbridge.

"Today we are committing to undertaking a thorough brand review, that will cover all elements of the brand, from the organisation and team's values and vision through to the logo and team name."

Any changes will be announced by the end of the year and come into effect in the 2021 season.

New Zealand Rugby chief executive Steve Tew said the club wanted to take their time completing the brand review and ensure any changes were not solely a response to the mosque attacks.

"Even if we wanted to, no significant change would be feasible prior to the next Super Rugby season when you take into account obligations to commercial contracts that are linked to the existing brand, merchandise, and lead times on apparel," he added.

"We have therefore concluded that we are better to pause our thinking on the team name at this point and instead allow that to become one of the outcomes of a full brand review."

Fifty-one people were killed when a gunman opened fire during Friday prayers at two Christchurch mosques on March 15.

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