Lions serve statement of intent with 10-try victory

The British and Irish Lions kick-started their tour of South Africa with a ruthless 10-try demolition of the Golden Lions. After the stuttering performance in the first game, this 74-10 victory was heartening stuff and will lift everyone around the squad while serving notice to the Springboks that they will not have everything their own way.

A fuller report will be posted later today but in the meantime, start leaving your views below. Did we see the test combination in midfield where Stephen Jones, Jamie Roberts and Brian O’Driscoll linked so well? Did Lee Mears play himself into contention with an excellent display of throwing? Has Tommy Bowe got one hand on a test jersey? What did you think of the mobile, athletic back row combination of Tom Croft, David Wallace and Jamie Heaslip? Or were the Golden Lions too poor to really allow any concrete judgement?

We would be very interested to hear your thoughts.

9 thoughts on “Lions serve statement of intent with 10-try victory

  1. All cred to the lions they really thrashed the G lions. The G lions defence was shocking but i dont think that this game can reflect the test matches or the Emerging boks game.

    Our provicial sides have depth but seem lost with out the Boks players in them.

  2. I would have thought last night revealed a real lack of depth in the club side?

    Bit early to get into this but, well, it’s fun:

    1. Gethin Jenkins
    2. OPEN – Mears has to hit his jumpers, and he missed too often last night
    3. OPEN – Murray’s the favourite but Vickery looked backed to his rampaging best last night
    4. AW Jones
    5. Paul O’ Connell
    6. Tom Croft – although Ferris is going to make a fight of this
    7. OPEN – Wallace looked great last night, but was poor in the opener
    8. OPEN
    9. Mike Philips
    10. Stephen Jones
    11. Tommy Bowe
    12. Jamie Roberts
    13. BOD
    14. OPEN – Monye’s a game changer, but he looks like he could send it either way
    15. Lee Byrne – forget about it

  3. Pretty much agree with that Hackney – i didn’t think Vicks was quite back to his best last night, he gave away two very blatant penalties which we cannot afford to do.

    I thought Mears did well, i can only remember one lineout where he didn’t hit the man?

    We need Powell to be given a start at 8 to see if he’s going to make that position his own.

    Croft proved what most of us knew before the tour – he should have been selected in the first place!

    Kearney should be given some time at 14 to see if he can play there with Byrne and Bowe – that has the ring of a very secure and assured back three but lacking the extra pace Monye brings to both attack and cover defence.

  4. Mears did well for me, excellent in the loose and missed only one throw – his first one, which is probably why people remember it.

    My Test XV:

    15 Lee Byrne
    14 Tommy Bowe
    13 Brian O’Driscoll
    12 Jamie Roberts, unless Flutey has a stormer
    11 open competition
    10 Stephen Jones, unless O’Gara has a stormer AND Jones’ form gets worse
    9 Mike Phillips
    1 Gethin Jenkins or Andrew Sheridan – Jenkins’ spot for now, but Sheridan can displace him if he plays at his very best
    2 Lee Mears
    3 open competition
    4 Paul O’Connell
    5 open competition
    6 Tom Croft
    7 open competition
    8 open competition (need to see much more of Andy Powell)

  5. Would generally agree but I’m with Spike on Mears. Thought he had an excellent game with a lovely offload teeing up one of the trys. He may not be spectacular but he does the basics well and gets around the park.

    Funny how the wing spot seems open when Shane Williams seems nailed onto it until very recently. Would be nice to see him find a spark (as well as a new haircut). But all in all it was an exciting performance. Let’s hope they can keep up the momentum. To me the next two games are key. Beat the other Super 14 oppo and then its more represenative XVs before the first test so winning the next two would mean a genuine opportunity to go into the first Test unbeaten. May be getting ahead of myself there though.

  6. i don’t the test team is as final as everyone says, after one poor display and one rout. i’d say there are only four dead certainties, and even then there might be injuries. these would be 5/12/13/15. even the props are not as nailed-on as before, with the english front row all looking good. this is who i’d pick for the test if it was this weekend, but remember a few players haven’t really featured yet – fitz, ellis, half-p, flutey, ferris, murray, hines, o’callaghan, d’arcy, ford, kearney, murray have all had little if any action yet. also no-one’s really played themselves OUT of contention thus far, except i’d say earls and blair

    1. Jenkins
    2. Mears
    3. murray
    4. shaw, but AWJ DOC and hines all in the frame
    5. Paul O’ Connell
    6. Croft/ worsley
    7. williams
    8. heaslip. andy powell must be an outsider, terrible in 6N
    9. Mike Phillips
    10. ROG – still has an x factor that jones lacks imho
    11. see my comments about people not having played yet. but bowe as of now. note how shane williams is fading from the picture
    12. Jamie Roberts
    13. BOD
    14. monye
    15. Lee Byrne

    bench (if worsley plays): vickery (either side)/ ford/ croft/ wallace/ ellis/ hook/ fitzgerald

  7. Here, here Kemlo – Shane’s haircut was abysmal. I also found the state of the non-playing Lion’s shirt and tie combinations appalling – why can’t the cream of Britain’s rugby player’s knot a tie and find a collar that fits?

    But I am pleased to say that these were the only parts of last night’s performance where we let ourselves down.

    Lee (ray) Mears has to be shoe-in on current form.

  8. I’m with Tom, the test team is far from final, there is a lot of rugby to be played before the first test and there will be injuries too.

    The players who played in the first game are not out of it and there are guys who haven’t even got on the park.

    Another enthralling day, with 2 half backs that could light it up, hook especially.

    And what a front row, I want to see the SA scrum lift off the floor today, Sheridan back to his best, Murray reminding the Boks of last autumn. We should not look only to win the scrum in the tests but absolutely demolish it.

    I is our area of strength.

  9. No doubt the (British) Lions played really well, and credit to them, they kept it up right to the end. But the Golden Lions were very poor and looked completely disinterested in the game – probably a symptom of the management issues they’re experiencing at the moment. If they’d played to their potential the match should have been a lot closer, and would have given us a better idea of how good this BL team really is.

    But yes, I agree the midfield looked very good, and on that performance should definitely start the tests.

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