Romano hurt a calf muscle early in his team’s 26-29 loss to the Hurricanes in Christchurch last Friday.
His place in the 27-man squad has been taken by Jimmy Tupou.
Captain Kieran Read left the Hurricanes game with a head knock, but was cleared to depart with the team.
The Crusaders took 27 players to South Africa, but beleaguered wing Zac Guildford wasn’t with them.
The out-of-flavour All Black is yet to suit up for the playing side this season and although he has struggled with a minor injury, questions will be starting to emerge as to whether his playing days in New Zealand are over.
He’s played one match for the development side and is considered by many as a player who has the X-factor which is so clearly lacking from the back line.
The 13th-placed Crusaders play the Lions in Johannesburg this weekend and the Cheetahs in Port Elizabeth a week later.
Backs: Israel Dagg, Johnny McNicholl, Nemani Nandolo, Nafi Tuitavake, Daniel Lienert-Brown, Rey Lee-Lo, Kieron Fonotia, Ryan Crotty, Tom Taylor, Colin Slade, Tyler Bleyendaal, Andy Ellis, Willi Heinz.
Forwards: Kieran Read (captain), Matt Todd, Luke Whitelock, George Whitelock, Sam Whitelock, Jordan Taufua, Dominic Bird, Jimmy Tupou, Owen Franks, Nepo Laulala, Wyatt Crockett, Mike Kainga, Corey Flynn, Ben Funnell.
Source: NZ News