The All Blacks host the British and Irish Lions in the third and final Test match of the 2017 tour of New Zealand. Whoever wins this match wins the tour.
So much is at stake for both sides, after the Lions’ victory last week put them in a position to clinch only their second series win over New Zealand in 129 years of touring.
With one victory apiece, the All Blacks ramped up training this week to avoid joining the 1971 New Zealand team in losing a series to the Lions.
The match day squad sees two expected changes through injury. Winger Waisake Naholo has been named on the right wing with Israel Dagg moving to fullback.
Anton Lienert-Brown comes in at centre with new All Black Ngani Laumape being rewarded for his standout performance for the Hurricanes on Tuesday night, coming into the match day 23.
The British and Irish Lions have never won back-to-back Test matches against the All Blacks, while the Kiwis are undefeated at Eden Park since 1994, including winning their last 39 Tests and the first Test at the famous ground.
In 11 previous series, the Lions has only once won the last Test and that was in 1959. The All Blacks have not lost at Eden Park for 23 years, a run of 39 games.
THIS IS MASSIVE!
We are waiting for the kick-off.
Sam Warburton leads the tourists out onto the field followed by the All Blacks. Time for the New Zealand national anthem.
TJ Perenara is leading Kapo o Pango.
1.00: BEEP! BEEP! We are underway in Auckland at Eden Park for this decider. Romain Poite is tonight’s referee and Jonathan Sexton kicks deep. The All Blacks take it up and Aaron Smith, against the sideline, kicks to halfway.
2.00: Sam Warburton is penalised for being off his feet. The skipper looks hard done by and appeared to be on his feet. Beauden Barrett, who was 7/10 last week, will kick from 40 metres out.
3.00: MISS! Beauden Barrett has pushed it wide to loud cheers of the Lions support: 0-0
5.00: Conor Murray clears his lines, however, the Lions penalised for a lineout infringement and the All Blacks go quickly. Beauden Barrett fends and sends Julian Savea away, but the winger knocks on with the try-line at his mercy.
6.00: Beauden Barrett is defending at second five eight and Ngani Laumape is at standoff. Jonny Sexton is lined up behind Jonathan Davies for a crash ball.
8.00: It is frenetic by the All Blacks. Mako Vunipolo wins the turnover, the ball pops loose to Owen Farrell, who attempts a clearance, but kicks a ‘freshly’ – the flyhalf must have thought there was an advantage for a knock-on. The Kiwis have a scrum on the Lions 22, in centre field.
11.00: Maro Itoje wins another turnover, the ball is shifted to Farrell, who kicks out on the full. The Kiwi lineout is not great and the Lions counter. They are going through the phases and are stretching the All Blacks.
13.00: Beauden Barrett intercepts and races down field from his five-metres line. He has support by Ngani Laumape, but he can’t out-run Jonathan Davies. He offloads to Barrett, but Anthony Watson intercepts on his five-metres line.
15.00: TRY Ngani Laumape! Savea takes it up, the Kiwis go wide through Beauden Barrett, who kicks a cross-kick to brother Jordie. The younger Barrett jumps high, beats Elliot Daly and flings the ball to Laumape on the bounce, who dives in for the score: 5-0
16.00: Beauden Barrett adds the touchline conversion: 7-0
18.00: We are going to the TMO George Ayoub, to see if someone was taken out for blocking in the Daly chase for the ball. Liam Williams runs into an All Black, goes down, but that is not a penalty. Holywood by the Welshman. The Lions have a lineout inside the Kiwi 22.
19.00: Beauden Barrett is pinged for offsides, Sexton puts up a bomb, but Israel Dagg gathers. Farrell will take a shot from close range. The All Blacks defended the lineout drive superbly, making the Lions go wide after being halted.
20.00: PENALTY! The Englishman gets the Lions on the board: 7-3
22.00: Savea runs over Williams after collecting Beauden Barrett’s cross-kick. The Kiwis go wide and lose the ball forward. The Lions try shifting wide and lose the ball forward, themselves. The game is being played at pace, with both sides finding space in the outside channels, it is just some poor handling (in good conditions) that is proving costly.
23.00: BIG SCRUM! The All Blacks bulldozed the Lions scrum. Aaron Smith goes to Beauden Barrett, who hits the line flat, but knocks on.
24.00: Now, it’s a penalty for collapsing to the Lions. Romain Poite with a contentious call. The kick does not go out and the All Blacks kick a bomb. They regather possession and kick again.
25.00: Liam Williams takes the high ball and loses it forward. Scrum to the Kiwis, near the touchline, just outside the Lions’ 22.
28.00: The All Blacks go nine phases, taking it up around the fringes before the ball is lost forward. The Lions attempt a counter-attack but are stopped inside their 22, so they go to the boot.
29.00: It is all New Zealand at the moment, they are trying to stretch the Lions, playing very flat at the advantage line, using the cross-kick, short passes and long wide ones as well. Julian Savea is being used in the battering ram mould of Davies in Gatland’s infamous ‘Warrenball’.
31.00: Jonny Sexton is down again. Farrell takes a quick-tap penalty, but the Lions almost botch the attack. Kieren Read is down after taking Anthony Watson’s shoulder to the jaw. Sean O’Brien is down too, after a big clean-out by Jerome Kaino. Farrell will attempt another penalty goal from in front.
32.00: PENALTY! He does not miss: 7-6
35.00: The Lions are near the Kiwi 22. They are rumbling up the field. Farrell makes a break and the All Blacks are under the pump. Somehow, they get the penalty at the ruck and can clear the danger. It was Sam Kane with the tackle on Sexton, who is down, again. It looks bad. The older Barrett kicks to the Lions’ 10-metres.
36.00: TRY Jordie Barrett! Wow! From the set piece, the All Blacks go wide, Laumape makes the break and wraps a pass to Anton Lienert-Brown, who ghosts through and sends the ball wide and long to the Barrett, who races in to score: 12-6
37.00: MISS! The conversion is wide: 12-6
39.00: The All Blacks are awarded a penalty, kick to touch and have one last chance before the break.
40.00: Aaron Smith kicks a bomb, Williams drops the ball, but it goes backwards. Davies kicks a grubber, Jordie Barrett cleans up, and is tackled into touch.
The half-time score was All Blacks 12 British and Irish Lions 6
41.00: BEEP! BEEP! We are back underway in the final 40 minutes of the tour. Sean O’Brien is off for CJ Stander for the Lions. The restart does not get 10 metres and the Kiwis are penalised after Kieren Read takes out Liam Williams in the air. Elliot Daly will attemp55-metreetre kick
42.00: PENALTY! Wow! It’s good from the winger: 12-9
44.00: Penalty to the All Blacks. They kick deep to the Lions’ 5-metres line. superb from Beauden Barrett.
45.00: NEARLY! The Kiwis go wide and Jordie Barrett throws a long pass to Julian Savea, but it is forward.
46.00: Another dropped pass, this time Savea loses the ball in the contact. There have been eight handling errors by the Kiwis – very unlike them.
47.00: The Lions come again and this time Jerome Kaino wins the turnover after Taulupe Faletau is held up.
48.00: Yet another handling error, nine now by the All Blacks. Sexton is down again, too and asked to leave the field for an HIA by the referee. Owen Farrell moves to flyhalf.
50.00: YELLOW CARD! Jerome Kaino hits Alun Wyn Jones on the jaw. It was accidental on second viewing. Courtney Lawes is on for the Welshman, who is off for an HIA.
51.00: Farrell kicks to the 22, but the Lions lose the ball on a skew throw. Big mistake.
53.00: The Lions find some width, but the pass to Williams by Anthony Watson, is called forward. Jonny Sexton is back on the field.
57.00: The Lions are starting to make handling errors, too. Another good opportunity goes to waste while attacking inside the Kiwi’s 22.
58.00: Elliot Daly loses the ball now. A big mistake. The All Blacks are making the changes and have a lineout on the Lions’ 10.
59.00: Brodie Retallick is penalised for a high tackle on Courtney Lawes. It looks very harsh as it was at the chest level. Farrell will take a shot at goal.
60.00: PENALTY! Farrell kicks a big, 48-metre kick to tie the game: 12-12
62.00: Kaino is back on. The Lions have the scrum in midfield. They go wide and are inside the Kiwi’s 22.
63.00: Eventually, the Lions make a mistake. The momentum seems to be with the tourists and has been since half-time.
65.00: Jordie Barrett takes a high kick and breaks forward, the All Blacks recycle and Beauden kicks a raking grubber-kick to the Lions’ 5-metres line. Wow!
67.00: The All Blacks are attacking the gain line and after two runs by Beauden Barrett, he runs into Taulupe Faletau and loses possession; scrum to the Lions inside their 22. Sam Warburton leaves the field for an HIA. Stander goes to the openside and Lawes to the blindside as they pack down for the scrum. The Kiwis win a penalty after Kyle Sinckler is penalised for collapsing.
68.00: PENALTY! It is good from the New Zealand standoff: 15-12
69.00: Conor Murray, who has been excellent again, is off for Rhys Webb. Jamie George has struggled with his throws and gives away possession, again. Big moment in the game.
71.00: Great work by Watson, on the sideline, cleaning up. But, the ball is kicked back to Jordie Barrett and the All Blacks come again.
73.00: Liam Williams knocks on a simple pick up, under no pressure, giving the All Blacks a scrum on the Lions’ 22.
74.00: Israel Dagg takes the ball at first receiver, but he is hit by Owen Farrell, held up and the Lions get the ball. Aaron Smith is off for TJ Perenara. Scrum is reset. Time is ticking down for the Lions. Can they do it?
75.00: BIG SCRUM! The Lions almost lose the ball, but the red pack walks the Kiwis backwards. Great scrum there.
77.00: Wyatt Crockett is penalised for not rolling away. Farrell will look to tie the game with less than three minutes’ remaining.
78.00: PENALTY! Farrell’s kick is good: 15-15
79.00: Oh boy! The All Blacks get a penalty for accidental offsides, but they are going to the TMO. Ken Owens knew he was offsides, even holding his arms up in a guilty way. The penalty will stand. It came from a poor restart by the Lions. Huge moment. No, it will be a scrum. What is going on here?
79.15: The All Blacks try and milk a scrum penalty, lose the ball and Webb breaks down the field, but the Lions knock on. Wow!
80.00: The hooter goes, the All Blacks attack; they are finding metres. Jordie Barrett breaks a tackle and is tackled short. The next man picks up and the Kiwis are tackled into touch. Game over! DRAW!
The final score is All Blacks 15 (12) British and Irish Lions 15 (6)
Tries – Laumape, J. Barrett
Pen – B. Barrett
Con – B. Barrett
Cards – Kaino (Yellow, 50th minute)
British and Irish Lions
Pen – Farrell (4), Daly
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
Assistant 1: Jérôme Garcès (France)
Assistant 2: Jaco Peyper (South Africa)
TMO: George Ayoub (Australia)
New Zealand All Blacks
15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Israel Dagg, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Aaron Smith, 8 Kieran Read (captain), 7 Sam Cane, 6 Jerome Kaino, 5 Samuel Whitelock, 4 Brodie Retallick, 3 Owen Franks, 2 Codie Taylor, 1 Joe Moody.
Replacements: 16 Nathan Harris, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Scott Barrett, 20 Ardie Savea, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Aaron Cruden, 23 Malakai Fekitoa.
British & Irish Lions
15 Liam Williams, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Elliot Daly, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Conor Murray, 8 Taulupe Faletau, 7 Sean O’Brien, 6 Sam Warburton (captain), 5 Alun Wyn Jones, 4 Maro Itoje, 3 Tadhg Furlong, 2 Jamie George, 1 Mako Vunipola.
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Jack McGrath, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Courtney Lawes, 20 Christiaan Stander, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Ben Te’o, 23 Jack Nowell