5 Quick Conclusions As The Lions Secure Tour Win Over The Crusaders

A lot of positives.

The Lions got their tour of New Zealand back on track this morning with a massive win over the Crusaders. The Super Rugby side came into the game undefeated, but were second best all morning.

Gatland’s men brought some much needed structure to their game, dominating possession with an excellent set-piece in the scrum and lineout. The big name Test players really showed their worth, as the Lions showed some excellent defence.

Here are five quick conclusions we can take from the game.

Defensive advantage.

The Lions managed to keep a Crusaders team that has averaged five tries a game this season at bay. It’s the first time since April 15th, 2017 the Crusaders have been stopped from scoring a try at home. They’ve also played 315 games in their history & only twice scored 3 pts or less: 3-9 v Golden Lions in 2007 & 0-6 v Highlanders in 2009.

Farrell & Murray make all the difference.

Probably the best nine and best ten in Europe right now, they really showed their worth. Both controlled the game so well and cemented their places in the Test team. With these two lads on form, anything is possible.

The Lions need to be more clinical.

While Gatland’s men were immense in defence, they will not be able to prevent the All Blacks from not scoring tries. In order for the Lions to stand a chance they will need to be more clinical and take their chances.

Anthony Watson at fullback.

The Bath and England man came on for Stuart Hogg around 20 minutes into the game after the Glasgow fullback suffered a nasty gash as a result of an accidental swinging elbow from teammate Conor Murray. Watson really took his chance when he came on, making a number of clean breaks. An exciting option, that needs to be looked at more.

Lineout & scrum looked excellent.

The Lions functioned really well in the set-piece and can definitely build on these strong platforms. If they can start converting their chances from these good positions, they can cause the All Blacks some serious problems.

The Lions are getting better every week. Let’s not rule them out just yet.

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Jason Hennessy

Jason is the editor at RugbyLAD. Any queries big or small you can reach him at [email protected]

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