With the Lions coming back to win the second test, the series is alive. Here is out third test preview.

All Blacks

There was so much talk throughout the week about the All Blacks midfield, how it was going to line up, what the backline composition was going to be. Well, this morning Hansen and co. let us in on their team. The forward pack picks itself, as do most of the bench. But the backline is a different kettle of fish. Two players starting a test for the first time, an out of sorts Savea coming onto one wing and another untried midfield combination.

The new All Blacks midfield. Can they stop the potent Lions combination?  © Copyright photo: Andrew Cornaga / www.Photosport.nz
The new All Blacks midfield. Can they stop the potent Lions combination?
© Copyright photo: Andrew Cornaga / www.Photosport.nz

So much to talk about, so many points, and all of this ahead of the biggest test between World Cups. This is the biggest test the All Blacks have played outside of a World Cup since Pretoria 1996. Do not underestimate that.

Lions

The big surprise in the Lions selection is that there were no surprises. For the first time in a long time, the Lions play consecutive tests with the same lineup. To many, it looked as though big Mako Vunipola had played his way out of the test team, but Gatland and Co. thought otherwise. The Lions backline, if given enough ball, will certainly back their chances against this All Blacks backline. And having had time out away from the rugby field enjoying Queenstown and the surrounds they will be fresh and raring to go. To create history!

Not a bad place to prepare for a Test match... ©INPHO/Billy Stickland / www.photosport.nz
Not a bad place to prepare for a Test match…
©INPHO/Billy Stickland / www.photosport.nz

Who would have thought at the beginning of the series that it would be the All Blacks backs under pressure going into the final test of the series?

Photos: www.photosport.nz

Author: Steven Prescott

I am a total sports fanatic; it is as simple as that. I love all sports, and when I’m not sitting at my computer living my dream with The 1014, I am planning adventures. The last time I did this I ended up convincing my wife to cycle 26,125km across three continents, and 22 countries with me as part of the Pedalling Prescotts.

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