Praise for Lions' lucky charm

Sat, 15 Jun 2013 15:40
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Warren Gatland said Leigh Halfpenny could kick the B&I Lions to victory against Australia after he totted up a record points tally against the Waratahs.

Head coach Warren Gatland said Leigh Halfpenny could kick the British and Irish Lions to victory against Australia after he totted up a record points tally against the NSW Waratahs.

The fullback slotted eight kicks out of eight - four penalties and four conversions - and also ran in two tries for a personal haul of 30 points in the 47-17 win, the Lions' biggest victory in 125 years of playing the Waratahs.

Halfpenny's figures overtook the 19 scored against the Waratahs in 2001 by England's Jonny Wilkinson, who famously drop-kicked the winning points in England's 2003 World Cup Final win over Australia.

The Lions' last series victory, in 1997 against South Africa, was also sealed by a last-gasp Jeremy Guscott drop-kick, following a gritty goal-kicking performance by Neil Jenkins.

"Previous Lions tours and World Cups are won on goal-kicking," said Gatland after Halfpenny's performance, a week before the first Test against Australia next Saturday.

"Apart from his goal kicking I thought some of his lines of running and his positional play defensively and kicking out of hand... I think he is playing at the top of his game.

"He is the ultimate professional. He prepares and does everything that you would expect of him. I thought again he was very, very good."

Halfpenny, who is being tutored by Jenkins on the current tour, now boasts place-kicking figures of 22 out of 23 and he landed all 11 attempts, many from acute angles, in the Lions' 69-17 win over Western Force.

AFP

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FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Sat, 29 July 2017
Crusaders v Chiefs 07h35 Christchurch
Golden Lions v Griquas 10h00 Johannesburg
Lions v Hurricanes 12h30 Ellis Park
Sharks v Pumas 15h00 Durban
Sun, 30 July 2017
Free State Cheetahs v Western Province 12h30 Bloemfontein
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 23 July 2017
Pumas v Golden Lions 43 | 36
Sat, 22 July 2017
Griquas v Blue Bulls 45 | 51
Stormers v Chiefs 11 | 17
Lions v Sharks 23 | 21
Crusaders v Highlanders 17 | 0
Fri, 21 July 2017
Free State Cheetahs v Sharks 47 | 12
Brumbies v Hurricanes 16 | 35
Sat, 15 July 2017
Sharks v Lions 10 | 27
Bulls v Stormers 33 | 41
Force v Waratahs 40 | 11
Hurricanes v Crusaders 31 | 22
Chiefs v Brumbies 28 | 10
Sunwolves v Blues 43 | 21
Fri, 14 July 2017
Kings v Cheetahs 20 | 21
Rebels v Jaguares 29 | 32
BRITISH & IRISH LIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
B&I Lions 0 0 0 0 0
Australia 0 0 0 0 0
Barbarians 0 0 0 0 0
Force 0 0 0 0 0
Reds 0 0 0 0 0
Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0
Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0
Rebels 0 0 0 0 0
NSW-Queensland 0 0 0 0 0
Blues 0 0 0 0 0
Highlanders 0 0 0 0 0
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0
Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0
Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0
NZ Barbarians 0 0 0 0 0
Maori All Blacks 0 0 0 0 0
New Zealand 0 0 0 0 0