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Sexton hardly surprised by Jordie Barrett's selection

Sexton hardly surprised by Jordie Barrett's selection

Would New Zealand have been out of sight had Beauden Barrett not missed three attempts on goal or referee Jerome Garces not been so fearless with his red card decision. "No, because we need to win to win the series".

The tour reaches its climax when Lions play the last of their 10 matches at Eden Park on Saturday, taking on the world champion All Blacks in a mouthwatering Third test to decide who wins the series.

New Zealand, 2/9 (general) to wrap up the series, have won their last 38 matches at Eden Park stretching back to 1994 and outplayed and outclassed the Lions in the first Test.

The game also marks the end of the 2017 British and Irish Lions tour, as they play their tenth and final game.

Liam Williams was an injury doubt after missing Wednesday training but he has been passed fit to play fullback.

While I abhor much of the criticism aimed at the Lions, I was disappointed Gatland should claim the hard but fair Jerome Kaino deliberately tried to injure Conor's legs in the first test.

The Lions later named an unchanged starting lineup and bench.

But Warren Gatland's side turned the tables at the Westpac Stadium and are now a best-price 4/1 (BoyleSports, BetStars) to do what few predicted, and clinch their first series win over the All Blacks since 1971. We had one day off, which was the Wednesday before the first Test, where we weren't travelling or doing something. The scrum-half scored a crucial try in the win and will start with the number 9 jersey once again.

Gatland was vindicated when the Lions won a thrilling test 24-21 - Farrell kicking the winning penalty three minutes from fulltime.

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With pristine conditions suiting an All Blacks side that are lethal with ball in hand, the pre-match forecast of the thunderstorms in Auckland will come as a welcome boost for the Lions.

"There has been when I've played in big games for club and country".

Ngani Laumape will fill the void left by Sonny Bill Williams at inside centre after he was given a four week ban for a head-high challenge on Anthony Watson last Saturday. Obviously, it's a set-up with Laumape as he's a strong, powerful guy, and Savea being brought in as well.

"It's a huge, huge Test match, the boys know what's at stake". Read is joined in the back row by two-time world cup victor Jerome Kaino and the ever impressive Sam Cane.

Steve Hansen has explained the reason for Ben Smith's absence and backed Jordie Barrett to shine in the veteran's absence on Saturday. Yeah, we do, we wouldn't have picked him in the first place if we didn't.

Beauden Barrett is relishing the "awesome" prospect of lining up in the same New Zealand team as his brother Jordie.

There is also a return for prolific winger Julian Savea.

Waisake Naholo and Rieko Ioane drop out of the test squad.

British and Irish Lions: L Williams; A Watson, J Davies, O Farrell, E Daly; J Sexton, C Murray; M Vunipola, J George, T Furlong, M Itoje, AW Jones, S Warburton (capt), S O'Brien, T Faletau. Replacements: K Owens, J McGrath, K Sinckler, C Lawes, CJ Stander; R Webb, B Te'o, J Nowell.

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