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Queensland Reds captain Daniel Herbert
"They've certainly stepped up a cog in their preparation for the first Test."
 real 14k

Lions skipper Martin Johnson
"The game lost a bit of shape"
 real 14k

BBC rugby union correspondent Ian Robertson
"For the Australians, the alarm bells will be ringing"
 real 14k

Jonny Wilkinson
"It's good to say I've played for the Lions"
 real 14k

banner Saturday, 16 June, 2001, 11:27 GMT 12:27 UK
Regal Lions show Reds no mercy
Brian O'Driscoll of the Lions
Brian O'Driscoll battles through the Queensland defence
Queensland Reds 8-42 Lions

An awesome first-half display from the Lions saw them breeze past the Queenslands Reds in Brisbane.

The match had been touted as the unofficial first Test but despite fielding a team containing a host of internationals, the Reds were roasted by the tourists and the match was over by half-time.

After going behind briefly, the Lions ran in five tries and allowed Queensland no further score until halfway through the second half.

  Match facts
Queensland: Cordingley
Lions: Luger, Henderson, James, Hill, O'Driscoll
Lions: Wilkinson (4)
Queensland: Flatley
Lions: Wilkinson (3)
Although they took their foot off the pedal after the break, it was an impressive performance from the tourists, who were led by Martin Johnson in his first game on the tour.

Also making his first appearance was Jonny Wilkinson, whose fluent display dispelled any worries that his recent injury absence from the game may have left him match-rusty.

Lions captain Martin Johnson admitted that his side should have done better after the break.

"We played well in the first half," he said. "We won't be unhappy with that. But we lost a little shape in the second half.

We eased off when we should have gone for the jugular
  Martin Johnson
"We took our foot off the pedal and eased off when we should have gone for the jugular.

"We have work to do - there is lots of room for improvement. It's going OK, we just need to keep working hard."

That both sides were anxious for a morale-boosting performance was immediately evident as several skirmishes threatened to boil over in the first few minutes.

Queensland took the lead after nine minutes when Elton Flatley kicked a penalty after an indiscretion from Phil Vickery.

Richard Hill scores for the Lions against Queensland Reds
Richare Hill scored a try just before half-time

But from then on it was one-way traffic as the Reds failed to add to their score for the rest of the first half.

After 13 minutes, Wilkinson cleverly kicked across the field for Dan Luger to race across the line unopposed.

Further tries from Rob Henderson and Dafydd James, both converted by Wilkinson, increased the Lions' lead.

There was no let-up from the Lions as a marvellous switch pass from Wilkinson set up Richard Hill for another try on the stroke of half-time.

And hardly had the whistle gone for the second half when Brian O'Driscoll burst through for a superb solo try.

Slower pace

After the frenetic action of the first half, the game was destined to slow down and the inevitable raft of substitutions also affected the flow.

Jonny Wilkinson in action for the Lions against Queensland Reds
Wilkinson showed no signs of match rustiness
Halfway through the second period, the Reds finally gave their supporters something to shout about when they finally crossed the Lions' try line.

Sam Cordingley charged down Matt Dawson's kick and was first to touch down the loose ball.

The Lions seemed to have eased their grip on the game and the following minutes saw Queensland's best spell of the match.

The tourists regained their concentration as the game petered out but they had done enough to send a strong message to the Australia ahead of the first Test in a fortnight.

Queensland: M Tabrett, J Pelesafa, D Herbert (capt), S Kefu, D McCallum, E Flatley, S Cordingley, T Kefu, D Croft, M Cockbain, M Connors, N Sharpe, G Panoho, M Foley, N Stiles.
Replacements: B Wakely, A Scotney, J Ramsamy, J Roe, M Mitchell, S Kerr, S Hardman.

Lions: I Balshaw, D James, B O'Driscoll, R Henderson, D Luger, J Wilkinson, R Howley, T Smith, K Wood, P Vickery, M Johnson (capt), D Grewcock, R Hill, N Back, M Corry.
Replacements: J Leonard, G Bulloch, S Murray, C Charvis, M Dawson, A Healey, J Robinson.

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