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Saturday, 16 November, 2002, 20:20 GMT
Lions miss out on last-gasp win
Andy Farrell tries to force his way through
Farrell tries to beat the New Zealand defence
Great Britain 14-14 New Zealand

Great Britain and New Zealand fought out a pulsating draw in the second Test at Huddersfield's McAlpine Stadium.

But the Lions came agonisingly close to snatching victory in the final seconds of a bruising encounter.

Paul Deacon saw his late drop goal drift wide of the left-hand post, much to the frustration of Andy Farrell.


Maybe we could have won it at the end... but we are still alive
Paul Sculthorpe

"With a bit more composure we would have won that match," said the Lions captain.

The draw means Britain still have a chance of levelling the Don't Drink Drive Test series going into the third and final match at Wigan's JJB Stadium next week.

Both coaches had predicted a fiery encounter - and they were not disappointed.

Terry O'Connor was rocked by a big hit inside the first 60 seconds while Jamie Peacock was left dazed by another ferocious tackle later in the half.

But the Lions, who were forced to shuffle their pack when Adrian Morley withdrew because of flu, were unfazed and looked the better side early on.

Kevin Sinfield catches the ball under pressure from Robbie Paul
Kevin Sinfield leaps higher than Robbie Paul
That was until 12 minutes, when Francis Meli rounded off a fantastic move that began deep in the New Zealand half.

The try seemed to knock the stuffing out of the home side, who went further behind six minutes later when Stephen Kearney dived under the posts.

Richard Swain, who had missed his first kick at goal, opened up a 10-point lead for the visitors by landing the conversion.

But just when it seemed as though the game might be running away from Britain, they hit back through Leon Pryce.

Paul Sculthorpe's looping pass set the Bradford winger free on the right - and he wasted little time crossing for his second try of the series.

Farrell's conversion reduced the deficit to just four points.


We'll go to the last Test and hopefully win it.... there's not much between the teams
Andy Farrell

And 10 minutes after the break, the gap was wiped out completely.

Meli fumbled a clever kick from James Lowes, allowing Martin Gleeson to gather and roll over the line.

Farrell's second successful kick gave the Lions the lead for the first time in the game.

But 17 minutes later the visitors were back in front, Ruben Wiki dancing his way through the home defence to score his side's third try.

With Swain missing an easy conversion, the Kiwis only held a two-point advantage.

And that was cancelled out when Farrell landed a penalty in the final four minutes.


Great Britain: Connolly (Wigan); Pryce (Bradford), Gleeson (St Helens), Senior (Leeds), Gilmour (Bradford); Sculthorpe (St Helens), Deacon (Bradford); Fielden (Bradford), Lowes (Bradford), O'Connor (Wigan), Peacock (Bradford), Farrell (Wigan, capt), Forshaw (Bradford). Subs: Sinfield (Leeds), Anderson (Bradford), Horner (Hull FC), Orr (Castleford).

New Zealand: Paul (Bradford); Fa'afili (NZ Warriors), Vagana (Canterbury), Toopi (NZ Warriors), Meli (NZ Warriors); Hohaia (NZ Warriors), Jones (NZ Warriors, capt); Seu Seu (NZ Warriors), Swain (Brisbane), Rauhihi (Canterbury), Wiki (Canberra), Kearney (Melbourne), Guttenbeil (NZ Warriors). Subs: Puletua (Penrith), Lauiti'iti (NZ Warriors), Betham (NZ Warriors), Swann (NZ Warriors).

Referee: Steve Clark (Australia).

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 ON THIS STORY
BBC Five Live's Dave Woods
"A fine performance by Great Britain"
GB captain Andy Farrell
"There's still a lot to play for"
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