British and Irish Lions down Maori All Blacks in Rotorua

Rippa rugby world cup The Rippa Rugby World Cup is on today

Rippa rugby world cup The Rippa Rugby World Cup is on today

But their attack is still yet to fire, and they can expect New Zealand to pick at that in the nearly endless talking shop ahead of the Test clashes.

Hansen put their lethargic start down to a lack of match practice as a team. "It goes a long way to winning a game and I thought the boys were very good tonight", Lions captain Peter O'Mahony said. He's started running out of time to get the practice.

Warren Gatland says the British and Irish Lions remain totally united following the much-talked-about addition of six new squad members. Of course we're not.

He refrained from saying exactly which areas needed improvement, but the message was: "there's still a lot of work to do".

"But today we got some good go-forward ball and created some good opportunities. In terms of devaluing the shirt, I can see some people's point of view on that but we're here to win a Test series".

"We were forming new formations and combinations". "We need to get through that one which is going to be tough".

"Even the try they scored was a lucky speculative kick through and unfortunately it's bounced up off George [North]".

But he did reveal the centres would probably be Sonny Bill Williams, Anton Lienert-Brown and Ryan Crotty, with one of them coming off the bench.

"Where do I think he'll play?". For us backs to have that platform to play off is unbelievable.

With those qualities they were able to take charge of the match in the second spell, and after a first half in which the lead changed hands four times.

Gatland added that other players would be added to the squad once the four home unions had completed their weekend tests.

The best example came just before halftime when, from a scrum, Julian Savea hit the line from the left wing and combined with Beauden Barrett to put brother Ardie over for his first try. "I guess he will bring them out from the United Kingdom".

Full-back Ben Smith, who captained the side for the first time, echoed his coach's views and pinpointed an improvement on the set-pieces ahead of the clash at Eden Park next week. A couple of stupid penalties in the first half, but we managed the game well and squeezed the life out of them.

"There is a clear difference between their two teams, their Wednesday team and their Saturday team", Hansen said on Thursday.

"It just shows the impact that they [the replacements] bring and it's part of the squad".

This was built on a solid rugby game plan, not a reliance on some interesting interpretations by a ref and booting the ball as high and as often as possible.

With Samoa behind them, there's no doubt excitement is building within the All Blacks camp ahead of their first encounter with the Lions in 12 years.

After going ahead 15-10 they piled on scrum pressure to win a penalty try in the 51st minute, when the Maori had lost scrumhalf Tawera Kerr-Barlow to the sin bin for a unsafe tackle.

Latest News