Lions tour: Coach Warren Gatland swears in frustration after media barrage

Posted June 08, 2017

Tour games don't often live in the memory when one reflects on previous British & Irish Lions campaigns, but Ihaia West's try that saw Tana Umaga's side record a famous victory might well be an exception to the rule.

The tourists, particularly the forwards, were much improved on their lacklustre 13-7 win against the Provincial Barbarians but the backs struggled with the speed and cutting edge of the Blues' attacking game.

"It's just a couple of slight errors that have cost us".

One player who featured predominantly in taking down the Lions proved to be Williams, with the inside centre scoring the Blues' second try and setting up the match-winner six minutes from time. Rieko Ioane had put Blues ahead with the game's opening try before Williams also touched down at the end of the first half, Stephen Perofeta converting.

"I don't think there'll be a lot of difference between some of the Super Rugby sides and the All Blacks - these guys have been together seven months and the All Blacks are coming in cold, (and) there's a massive amount of strength and depth".

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The Lions reclaimed the lead with two penalties to Wales fullback Leigh Halfpenny - their only second-half points - before Williams combined with West for the match victor.

Down 16-15 with the seconds ticking away, Sonny Bill Williams made 30 metres after breaking the Lions' defensive line and produced a trademark flick offload to West, who scooted around Leigh Halfpenny to secure the victor.

But then West popped up to shock Gatland and his men. "Obviously the try on half-time was disappointing and to get ourselves in front and concede a try - let's taking nothing away from the try Ihaia West scored and the offloading of New Zealand teams and that is only going to continue so we have to be a little bit better in stopping the offloading game".

"You've just got to stay alive, and we've talked about (that) the whole time".

Coach Warren Gatland's decision to go with established pairings - such as Welshmen Rhys Webb and Dan Biggar in the halves and Irishmen Robbie Henshaw and Jared Payne in midfield - would aid that process.