Predictions for the Lions Test series finale

The British and Irish Lions sign off for another four years in the Third Test tomorrow after two of the greatest Lions tests against South Africa.

It’s difficult to know how the game will be played tomorrow. Lions’ players thoughts will surely be turning to home, and a few weeks of rest after such a long season. There may be some yearning for revenge from those that featured in the earlier Tests, whilst the debutants will be playing proudly for their injured comrades.

South Africa appear to be using the game as a trial match before the Tri-Nations kicks off on July 18th. In that respect, the Springboks will be something of an unknown quantity, and the result is very difficult to predict.

I can see many different scenarios, but I’ve sticking to my guns and backing the Lions to prevent a series whitewash through steely determination.

What do you think? A Lions victory to banish the talk of their losing streak? Or a South African clean sweep?

8 thoughts on “Predictions for the Lions Test series finale

  1. A win is always good, but SA are in the fortunate position of trying out new combination, whereas the lions are putting in new changes cos they dot really have a choice. Lions by 10.

  2. Talk of an 80 minute brawl should be banished. Sure there is some bad blood but I believe both teams are bigger than that and professionalism will shine through. Besides with the Extreme Makeover Bok side and injury ravaged Lions side we have around 17 new players starting the game. Totally different test to the first two.

    Im predicting a tight 30 mins with a bit of niggle after which the Boks should run home a few tries to make it a 15-20 point ball game. Ellis Park is a Bok fortress and the strain of a long tour will take its toll on the Lions.

    The subject of ref’s has been highly debated this week though these issues have been around for a few years now. A variation in law interpretations will always be a part of the game. The amount of variation, of course, is the important thing.

    (This was actually why i was a huge fan of the ELV’s in the SUper 14 last year……….not beacuse they bettered the game…….but because bad refereeing was somewhat neutralised. Example: The breakdown is where most of the variations come in to play. By primarily awarding free-kicks at the breakdown teams were not continually punished 3 points for marginal ref calls……….Unless of course it was foul play or continous infringement. In my view the awarding of a penalty at scrum time should not be considered. The calls are always so 50/50.)

    But those laws are gone and the game must go on. A few ref issues:

    1. Communication. This is huge. If the ref doesnt get his point of view across early things get out of hand.
    2. Standards. Why was Bryce Lawrence intervening when the ref was talking to the TV official?. It was clear that he didnt have confidence in the refs comms.
    3. The super 14 this year allowed any ref to blow any game. This worked well as more quality refs were involved. (mostly South Africans I will add) WHy could we not have an SA or British ref? I dont believe that they would favour one side or another.

    4. The IRB need to scrutinise their ref training and evaluation.

    Lastly we are all gonna have to accept that in Rugby (where I believe the ref has such a big role) there will ALWAYS be calls that people dont like. Its about minimising these and getting on with the game.

    I guess the overall problem with Rugga is that its so complicated and the laws get changed every year. Wouldnt it be great if it was just a leather ball, 2 white lines and no holds barred?

  3. If the Bok forwards can dominate up front, then the backline will be devastating.

    I predict a Bok win by at least 10 points. If it rains, then the outcome will be very close.

    Sorry to say, but I can only see a white wash in the series for the Lions.

    Viva the Boks!!!

  4. Alot of it depends on the referee in my opinion. So far the South Africans have gained advantage by using dirty tricks and tactics. If we can have a ref that spots these unfair advantages then we have half a chance. The lions have played some fantastic rugby this summer but its all been overshadowed by filthy springbok play, obviously implemented by a dispicable maniac of a coach.
    If we have another blind frenchman in charge then im watching the coronation street omnibus!

  5. I think it is a total disgrace that the IRB allowed the South African team to enter the field wearing armbands re Bothas ban. This is a worldwide media event and to allow petulant behaviour like this, on top of their coaches bizzare comments demeans rugby. South Africa should be banned from International rugby until they apologise and sack those individuals who allowed this to happen.

  6. The Springboks lose test series against clinically superior British and Irish Lions.

    The British and Irish Lions came back from the first test loss to out scrum, outplay and most important- totally outthink a brawn laden SA team.

    The behaviour of the Springboks in all three tests is paramount to thuggery.

    Several Springboks behaviour- specifically with regards to off- the -ball incidents-were a disgrace to the rugby union code.

    The SA coach-appointed on political grounds has brought the game into total disrepute by making irrational, emotional comments.

    Sad that the first Black coach in the game resorts to playing the race card.

    It’s a sad day when rugby players try and hurt opponents.

    My call is is to criminally prosecute the disgraceful Boks-

  7. Some strong calls there from Guy!

    I don’t welcome any talk of criminal prosecution in rugby. I remember when Aurelien Rougerie tried to sue Phil Greening (i think it was for a high hit that resulted in a long injury lay-off?) and i thought that could be described as bringing the game into disrepute more than the hit itself.

    Rugby will always be a tough sport. It is up to the referees and IRB citing committees to make sure that when a team seriously infringes the laws and spirit of the game they punish them severely enough so as it doesn’t happen again (at least not for a long time).

    So far this hasn’t happened with this series. I really hope the SARFU is banned/fined/sanctioned very strongly for allowing the team to enter the field with the “Justice 4 Bakkies” armbands. Forget the general thuggery around the pitch, that is one of the most despicable things i’ve witnessed in rugby. Adam Jones is out for up to 6 months as a direct result of Botha’s dangerous charge! How can they be so disrespectful towards a fellow professional by protesting against a TWO WEEK BAN for the player who caused it!

    We’ve had some South African opinion on here recently, i would be really interested to know your thoughts on that particular subject (and please don’t just accuse me of whinging, I want to know if you think it is as disrespectful as i do).

  8. Absolutely Alan-SARFU need to take responsibility for the armbands.

    The word in rugby circles is that the inmates are running the prison-the coach os just a figurehead apparently, so as far as action goes,don’t hold your breathe!

    Keep your eyes open on Saturday’s encounter against the mighty Blacks.

    Let’s see how tough Bakkies Botha really is!

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