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16 Jun 17 21:16
Date Joined: 09 Feb 01
| Topic/replies: 315 | Blogger: arbster's blog
Not quite sure what the Lions are trying to achieve here...... yes, were always likely to slowly build into the series and this was always likely to be a game in which the Test team played...... but, you can prob get no more than 2-3 major games out of player in a series like this. Most of these players have already been to the well once against the Crusaders....... and tomorrow will be the second time in  a short period...... and this before the Test series commences.
I'm sure the Lions could grind out a forward dominated / high pressing defence / 9 man "one score" win again  (as they did against the Crusaders) ....... but not sure of the point of that......... if that's all they've got it wont come within 20 points of the NZ Test team (30-40 might be nearer the mark looking at what they did to Samoa today).......... so why bother? (why get on a plane, travel half way across the world..... just to do that).
The dilema is, if they try and throw it about they're probably come unstuck ..... as not their natural game...... and if the Lions are 1 score down with 20 minutes top go (with a few players with knocks and Sexton looking a bit iffy)....... do they really go all out for a win (in the way you might if it were a World cup QF)......... almost certainly not.......... in fact with Farrell injured I'd be keeping Sexton in cotton wool........ so the final 20 mins might be all about player management (limiting injuries / fatigue etc) rather than going all out for what, in the context of this tour, would be a rather meaningless win. The Maori are clearly no mugs (with 9 players with AB experience) and clearly "wont go away" at any point in the game.......... again I find myself puzzled (but in profit on the series) as to why (on earth) the Lions are 1-2
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Report stewardsenquirey June 16, 2017 10:47 PM BST
Yep I'm of the same opinion as you.Lay of the Lions looks to be the opening play.Really like the look of the Maori 15.
Anyone know what the weather conditions are expected to be ?
Report Brad Breath June 16, 2017 10:55 PM BST
Some good points you make Arbster.

However personally think the Lions could make quite a statement in this match. Maori set piece is typically poor - think the scrum especially tomorrow could be in for a real roasting. Yes the Maori have an exceptionally smart backline that can carve anyone with quick ball - but can't see them getting that.
The Lions pack completely thwarted the Crusaders pack, which was largely an All Black pack. First time they've ever been held to less than 7 points at home.

Not convinced they'll score many tries (perhaps 2-3 max) but can see a comfortable Lions victory here.

Stewards - "a light shower is possible, otherwise fine" was the forecast Ive just checked.....
Report stewardsenquirey June 16, 2017 11:13 PM BST
Thanks Brad.
Report arbster June 16, 2017 11:54 PM BST
The forward power game is fine, but very draining and recovery time becomes greatly extended .....if you analyse stats at quite a detailed level one of the features of teams who put in a bruising forward dominated performance one week ...... is that it is very difficult to back up subsequently (i.e. they "underperform" the next week and often the week after that as well e.g. they may win but they dont cover the "even money" hcp. and the more draining the initial game the longer this effect lasts)........... and lets not forget a lot of these players were totally shot to pieces (I mean totally shot to pieces) at the end of grand finals / Euro cups only 2-3 weeks ago etc........... I dont know how many times the Lions management think these players can go to the well.......... but Im already thinking Test match 3 could well be a cricket score and if tomorrow is a bruiser then the Lions "breaking point" could easily occur in Test match 2 ....... after which the flood gates open (and the Lions Tour is over)........... once the Lions lost to the Blues and Highlanders this series could only be "recovered" by the Test match results / performances..... and the Lions management seem to be caught between trying to save face in "warm up" games and not burning out the Test players before the Tests begin!
Report stewardsenquirey June 17, 2017 8:16 AM BST
Conditions look pretty damp,with a combination of the weather and the Lions defence then it has to be unders for me.
Report dlarssonf June 17, 2017 8:49 AM BST
Report razz June 17, 2017 9:03 AM BST
wow did the commentator just say one of the maori has just returned to playing again after 7 weeks for a concussion? I thought bans were longer than that for head trauma...
Report dlarssonf June 17, 2017 9:05 AM BST
these penalties the lions are committing are criminal
Report razz June 17, 2017 9:19 AM BST
nice save by etoje at the end there
Report razz June 17, 2017 9:25 AM BST
1.38 seems a little short, think they might actually sneak it this time though
Report arbster June 17, 2017 9:33 AM BST
Same old same old from the Lions......... looking at the body language you've got to start to worry about the Lions energy levels.......... and how many tries scored in open play in 4.5 games ........ Zero!
Report razz June 17, 2017 9:42 AM BST
thought the same, lot of them look a bit sluggish
Report razz June 17, 2017 9:54 AM BST
this is a bit more like it!
Report razz June 17, 2017 10:03 AM BST
they can take it easy now the last 20
Report rommel June 17, 2017 10:06 AM BST
wonder what the cap will be for the first test
Report razz June 17, 2017 10:12 AM BST
why did they go for the penalty then?
Report The_KAMIKAZEE_DRINKING_MACHINE June 17, 2017 12:26 PM BST
Have the Lions actually scored a proper try yet on this tour?
Report northanlite June 17, 2017 1:09 PM BST
define your idea of a "proper try."
Getting it over the whitewash is most peoples definition so yes, but not many.
I dunno. Maybe some running. A line break. Some passes. Something that gets me jumping out of my chair. Not a penalty try from a scrum or a rumble over the line from 2 metres out. I'm sure you know what I mean.Laugh
At the risk of being called a RACIST it's a bit of a mystery to me how Damien Mckenzie from Invercargill is a Maori.
Report Charlie June 17, 2017 4:49 PM BST
It's a bit of a mystery to me how anyone knows where Invercargill is.
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