Skip to main contentAccess keys helpA-Z index

[an error occurred while processing this directive]
| Help
---------------
CHOOSE A SPORT
RELATED BBC SITES
Last Updated: Friday, 8 July 2005, 13:38 GMT 14:38 UK
Key battles: Lions v New Zealand

By Rob Hodgetts

The Lions were on the receiving end of another mauling by the All Blacks as they crashed to a first series whitewash for 22 years.

The 38-19 defeat was an improvement on the woeful second Test but the Lions were again out-classed by a side with more vigour, aggression, nous and basic skill levels.

Here BBC Sport analyses the key battles which decided the third Test at Auckland's Eden Park.

STEPHEN JONES v LUKE McALISTER - FLY-HALF

Stephen Jones and Luke McAlister
Jones slotted four penalties and a conversion and was solid in his positional kicking game.

But his style of play as a static link man seemed a throwback to the dark ages when compared to the dynamism of his opposite number.

McAlister made an impressive debut as a replacement for the injured Daniel Carter, the new wonder-boy of New Zealand rugby.

The 21-year-old slotted 13 points and delved into a rich box of tricks to outfox the Lions, either through sleight of hand or with canny kicks over, through, and probably under the line.

WILL GREENWOOD v TANA UMAGA - CENTRE

Will Greenwood and Tana Umaga
Greenwood made his first start in a Test for the Lions but was of limited impact as he draws to the end of a distinguished career.

The rugby brain may be still sharp but faulty wiring has slowed down his reactions and he is a shadow of the 2003 World Cup winner.

Umaga continued to hit back at his critics following O'Driscoll-gate in the best possible manner with two tries in a virtuoso captain's performance.

The dreadlocked centre bristled with intent, and his pace, power and aggressive defending was like a baked potato - too hot to handle.

LEWIS MOODY v RODNEY SO'OIALO - OPEN-SIDE

Lewis Moody and Rodney So'oialo
Moody, one of the Lions' successes in the second Test, continued his emergence as the rightful heir to Neil Back's open-side throne for England.

His all-action, never-give-up style of controlled mayhem caused the All Blacks problems at times and his late consolation try was reward for his industry.

So'oialo, normally number eight for New Zealand, was preferred at open-side to Marty Holah in the absence of the injured Richie McCaw.

His muscular presence and operations on the borderline of legality are to the All Blacks' advantage when they come off but he is no McCaw when it comes to scrapping for ball on the ground.

MARK CUETO v SITIVENI SIVIVATU - WING

Mark Cueto and Sitiveni Sivivatu
Cueto finally got his chance after being overlooked by Sir Clive Woodward, both for England and the first two Lions Tests.

He possess the strength and speed to ridicule less committed defences but the black wall kept him firmly shackled.

Sivivatu showed glimpses of the power and poise that saw him selected ahead of cousin Joe Rokocoko but valiant Lions defending also kept him off the score sheet.

Could have cost New Zealand another score when he failed to offload inside when he was bundled into touch yards from the Lions line in the second half.




LIONS TOUR 2005

ALL BLACKS WHITEWASH LIONS




VOTE RESULTS
What was the main reason for the Lions' whitewash in NZ?
All Blacks just too good
58%
Woodward's selections
30%
Injuries to key players
6%
Squad was too big
6%
97190 Votes Cast
Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion

Vote now closed



SEE ALSO
William is 'saddened' by blasts
08 Jul 05 |  Asia-Pacific
Pick your Lions XV
24 May 05 |  Internationals
Lions tour venue guides
18 May 05 |  Internationals
Early history of the Lions
18 May 05 |  Internationals
Fixture list for Lions tour to NZ
08 Apr 05 |  Internationals
Lions player profiles
25 May 05 |  Internationals
All Blacks player profiles
25 May 05 |  Internationals


RELATED BBC LINKS:

RELATED INTERNET LINKS:
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

E-mail services | Sport on mobiles/PDAs

MMIX

Back to top

Sport Homepage | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League | Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Snooker | Horse Racing | Cycling | Disability Sport | Olympics 2012 | Sport Relief | Other Sport...

BBC Sport Academy >> | BBC News >> | BBC Weather >>
About the BBC | News sources | Privacy & Cookies Policy | Contact us
banner watch listen bbc sport