Media: Lions victory 'larceny'

Sun, 23 Jun 2013 11:06
Large kurtley beale slips Large aus v lions Large israel folau aus v b i lion Large aus v lions2 Large aus v lions3

The B&I Lions' thrilling 23-21 first Test win over Australia was "larceny" and the rest of the series will be similarly nerve-shredding.

The British and Irish Lions' thrilling 23-21 first Test win over Australia was "larceny" and the rest of the series will be a similarly nerve-shredding affair, newspapers warned Sunday.

Australia's Kurtley Beale slipped and missed a penalty in the dying seconds Saturday as the B&I Lions edged to victory in Brisbane to move to the verge of a long-awaited series win.

Steve James wrote in The Sunday Telegraph that Lions kicker Leigh Halfpenny was worth his weight in gold, while Beale would be left nursing the strain of defeat.

"Just imagine being an Australian throughout the match, and especially in the synapses-shredding finale," he wrote.

"Sadly for Beale nobody will remember his general play in this match. He will always be the man under whose left foot the first Test slipped.

"Without a solid base no man can kick anything. That was it. The Lions had stolen a victory. And it was a steal, larceny at its most brazen.

"Halfpenny was the difference. The Lions had a goal-kicker, and the Australians did not. That almost always counts in Test rugby."

Former England prop David Flatman wrote in The Independent on Sunday that referee Chris Pollock's handling of the game was wrong, but had made for a thrilling encounter.

"What a win for the Lions. It was massive, but it was a game of incredibly fine margins," he wrote.

"The only change I would make for next week would be to include Ben Youngs at scrum-half from the start. Mike Phillips just did not fire.

"His kicking was too often long and seemingly - when watching potential chasers - unannounced. And watching him jog after the galloping [Will] Genia made for painful viewing."

The Mail on Sunday's Patrick Collins said veteran Ireland centre Brian O'Driscoll could guide the younger Lions over the finish line in the three-Test series.

"Despite the victory, the task remains ferociously daunting," he wrote.

"For in this first Test, Australia suffered all manner of cruel injury and base misfortune. Since they are unlikely to be dealt such a hand for the rest of this series, it becomes important to exploit their current plight.

"The series is still open, dangerously so. The Australians are not beaten, merely wounded. If the Lions are to prevail, they will need the best efforts from their best men. Brian O'Driscoll has heard the call, and his response may shape the fate of this entrancing series."

Former Wales number eight Eddie Butler said cool heads from now on will decide which way the series goes.

"It would appear that the next two weeks are not going to be easy on the nerves of the rugby-loving population," he wrote in The Observer.

"It was a malfunctioning foot that ended it, but it will be heads that decide this series, heads that can sift through the issues of selection and stay calm in the stressful days ahead. May your own nerves survive the journey."

AFP

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 May 2016
Boland v Eagles 13h00 Wellington
Free State Cheetahs v Pumas 13h00 Bloemfontein
Border v Falcons 17h00 East London
Kings v Jaguares 17h00 Ascoli Piceno
Sat, 28 May 2016
Blues v Crusaders 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Sunwolves 09h40 Canberra
Western Province v Griquas 10h15 Newlands
Blue Bulls v Leopards 12h15 Loftus Versfeld
Golden Lions v EP Kings 13h00 Johannesburg
Stormers v Cheetahs 13h00 DHL Newlands
Namibia v Griffons 13h00 Windhoek
Saracens v Exeter Chiefs 14h00 London
Bulls v Lions 15h05 Loftus Versfeld
Connacht v Leinster 16h30 Edinburgh
Sun, 29 May 2016
Rebels v Force 06h05 Melbourne
England v Wales 14h00 London
B&I LIONS
MORE LOGS