All Blacks great Colin Meads impressed by British and Irish Lions rally

All Blacks great Colin Meads impressed by British and Irish Lions rally

All Blacks great Colin Meads impressed by British and Irish Lions rally

The Lions head coach is particularly aggrieved with what he says is illegal blocking by New Zealand, and he feels the All Blacks will be adept in this area too.

Gatland says Kiwi players are adept at subtle blocking or holding methods on support runners which cause attacks to break down.

He said officials stopped the tactic in the Maori All Blacks match last Saturday, coinciding with the Lions' best performance on tour so far in a 32-10 win.

The All Blacks have tried to call the Lions' bluff by suggesting Gatland's teams are one-dimensional - but the tourists' boss insisted he would not lose his nerve ahead of the Test series.

All six additions have been named on the Lions' bench for Tuesday's clash against the Chiefs in Hamilton, to keep the front-line stars fresh for Saturday's first Test against New Zealand.

Ireland's Rory Best will become the fifth captain in six games for the British and Irish Lions on their New Zealand tour when he leads the side against the Waikato Chiefs in Hamilton tomorrow.

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"Then we'll go down to Auckland, there's a sea of red there".

"The frustrating thing for us is the amount of blocking that's going on, it makes it hard to complete attacking opportunities and situations because there is so much happening off the ball in terms of holding players or subtly holding players", Gatland told British media.

The quick rush defence of the Lions has been a feature of the tour.

Anthony Watson was on the other wing from North, and has credit in the bank after impressing Gatland by how he played off the bench against the Crusaders.

Scotland scrum-half Laidlaw said: "They are all Test match players". All I am asking is the officials are aware of it'.

Whether that's [Tuesday], in what's perceived as a game that not everybody wants to play in, or the first test against the All Blacks.

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"We've just got to handle that and just hope the refs, the assistant refs and the TMOs pick up what's going on". Unfortunately he rolled his ankle a little bit so hadn't recovered in time.

"So there will be some tough debates and discussions to have on the final make-up of what the back-row is going to be for Saturday".

"They are probably some of the form loose forwards of the last couple of years".

Asked if Joseph's omission from the Chiefs squad could indicate he has a chance for the first Test, Gatland replied: "Well he's played pretty well for us".

"I was always confident about Owen being fit for the weekend", Gatland said.

The Lions will not be such a pushover when it comes to defending, though Lienert-Brown believes that they have something in the locker that they will unleash in the Test series. We took George Kruis off relatively early because his calf was a bit tight. "The ones who deserve to be there, who would give their right arms to be there, rather than some players purely because they happen to be in the right geographical location".

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