Jul 01, 2017
British and Irish Lions record 2nd Test victory over All Blacks
The British and Irish Lions, including 5 Sarries, won a crucial clash against New Zealand by 24 points to 21 to level the series at 1-1 ahead of the final contest at Eden Park in a week’s time.
Mako Vunipola, Jamie George, Maro Itoje, Owen Farrell and Liam Williams were all selected by Warren Gatland to start the all-important second Test against the All Blacks.
The first 15 minutes remained scoreless after in-form fly-half Beauden Barrett missed a kick at goal, as it came off the posts. However the All Blacks got the first points of the game, after a kick resulting from scrum penalty was this time successfully converted by the 10.
However, it wasn’t long before the Lions got their own back through Owen Farrell, who landed a terrific kick in awful conditions, to bring the score to 3-a piece.
The first half was not devoid of drama, and following a dangerous challenge on Bath’s Anthony Watson, New Zealand inside centre Sonny Bill Williams was shown a red card in the 24th minute, the first All Black to be sent off for 50 years and the first ever player to be sent off in New Zealand
The kickers kept the scoreboard alive for both sides as the weather continued to influence the outcome of the game, and the travelling Lions fans contributed to an electric atmosphere in Wellington.
With the scores 9-9 after 40 minutes, it was New Zealand who got the first opportunities of the second half to up their points tally, with a series of kicks from the boot of Barrett increasing the home side’s lead to 18-9.
Cries of ‘Lions, Lions’ were turned up to an almost deafening pitch just before the hour mark, when new signing Liam Williams provided the final pass to his Welsh teammate Taulupe Faletau to score the Lions first try.
9 minutes later and it was the turn of Sarries’ Jamie George to make a break, running a great line through the All Blacks defence to give Conor Murray the chance to dot down over the line, converted by Owen Farrell, which brought the scores to 21 points each, setting up a tense final 10 minutes.
It was clearly meant to be for the Lions, as an All Black mistake gave Farrell the opportunity to silence his critics and slot the match-winning points. His kick was successful and it handed the tourists a series levelling 24-21 win, with all eyes now turning to Auckland and Eden Park for the final test in a week’s time.
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