Saracens’ Owen Farrell once again stepped up to the plate when he was needed most as he landed a late penalty to ensure the British & Irish Lions earned a series draw in New Zealand.
The fly-half stepped up with just moments to go, just as he did one week ago, to seal a 15-15 draw for the Lions and ensure a share of the spoils in the series.
It means the Lions, who had 12 Aviva Premiership Rugby players in the 23, come away with just a second drawn series in their long and illustrious history.
FARRELL AND DALY KICK THE POINTS
Farrell kicked 12 points in all with Wasps’ Elliot Daly also smashing a 55-metre effort over from inside his own half straight after half-time.
Daly becomes the first ever player to score points for and against the Lions having featured in the Barbarians squad which faced the famous touring side back in 2013.
A fabulous test series, a great tour and a massive shame it’s over! Congratulations to @lionsofficial all players, management and supporters
— Jonny Wilkinson (@JonnyWilkinson) July 8, 2017
Meanwhile Farrell was 100 per cent from the tee and held his nerve under the biggest of pressure with just three minutes to go to drag his side level.
WATSON’S BODY ON THE LINE
Bath Rugby’s Anthony Watson was unable to stretch his legs too regularly in attack but showed what he can do in defence with two vital contributions.
Thanks for the love everyone, been a bit of a mad year. Time to get right 🍻
— Anthony Watson (@anthonywatson_) July 8, 2017
Firstly, with the All Blacks intercepting a Farrell pass and breaking away it was the Bath winger who managed to get back and collect the offload intended for Julian Savea after Jonathan Davies’ tackle.
That kept the score at 0-0 and later, with the Lions trailing 15-12, Watson was on hand again to collect a tricky grubber kick through and help the tourists clear their lines when the pressure was on.
It felt like Saracens second row Maro Itoje was everywhere at Eden Park, earning turnovers, making tackles and carrying strongly with ball in hand.
What a game already by @maroitoje -bloody awesome – what a player this man is going to be!! Already head & shoulders above most -& youngest!
— Will Carling (@willcarling) July 8, 2017
He made ten carries, joint highest with Mako Vunipola among the forwards, and was a real driving force for the Lions for the full 80 minutes.
Harlequins Kyle Sinckler came off the bench and made a vital intervention to win a scrum penalty with the Lions trailing by three and just four minutes left on the clock.
The Lions were able to clear their lines and soon had a penalty of their own which Farrell knocked over to level the scores.
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