Australia v British and Irish Lions in Sydney
Venue: ANZ Stadium
Referee: Romain Poite (France)
With the series squared 1-1 last Saturday the deciding test is about to be played. With only a 1-point and a 2-point margin between these two teams in the first two tests this could go either way. The whole rugby world will be watching this game. Can’t wait!
What a week it’s been leading up to this game. Firstly James Horwill was cleared to play after being banned and then Warren Gatland’s bomb blast on Tuesday when he left Brian O’Driscoll ot of the squad of 23 for this vital game. The question asked in the media has been, ‘Where are the leaders?’. With Warburton, O’Connell and now O’Driscoll out this Lions side appears to be lacking leadership going into this vital game. As Planet-Rugby points out Gatland’s future hangs in the balance-If the Lions win it will be a stroke of genuis, if they lose it will be a selection disaster. So more hangs on the outcome of this test.
Then in the Australian camp veteran George Smith, one of the masterminds of Australia’s 2001 victory over the Lions, has been included at the expense of in-form player Michael Hooper who drops to the bench.
Whatever happens a capacity 80,000 fans in red or yellow will witness what could be the greatest game in 2013.
Prediction: Australia by 2, again!
15 Kurtley Beale, 14 Israel Folau, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Christian Lealiifano, 11 Joseph Tomane, 10 James O'Connor, 9 Will Genia, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 George Smith, 6 Benjamin Mowen, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 James Horwill, Capt. 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Benn Robinson.
16 Saia Faingaa, 17 James Slipper, 18 Sekope Kepu, 19 Robert Simmons,
20 Benjamin McCalman, 21 Michael Hooper, 22 Nicholas Phipps, 23 Jesse Mogg.
Head Coach: Robbie Deans
British and Irish Lions
15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Tommy Bowe, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 James Roberts, 11 George North, 10 Jonathan Sexton, 9 Michael Phillips, 8 Tobias Faletau,
7 Sean O'Brien, 6 Danial Lydiate, 5 Geoffrey Parling, 4 Alun-Wyn Jones, Capt. 3 Adam Jones, 2 Richard Hibbard, 1 Alexander Corbisiero.
16 Thomas Youngs, 17 Mako Vunipola, 18 Danial Cole, 19 Richard Gray,
20 Justin Tipuric, 21 Conor Murray, 22 Owen Farrell, 23 Manu Tuilagi.
Head Coach: Warren Gatland