Lions beat Australia to win series

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Updated: July 6, 2013

The Lions claimed a first series win in 16 years after they beat Australia by 41-16, to win 2-1 in the series.

Warren Gatland saw his decision to drop Brian O’ Driscoll vindicated in the end, when his replacement, Jamie Roberts, went over for a try during the game.

It wasn’t all one way traffic though, the Aussies fought back from 19-3 down to 19-16 with some great pressure and fast plays, but it was the Lions who got a second wind and pushed on for the win.

There were some super human efforts on the pitch from the Lions, and none other than Leigh Halfpenny, whose kicking a creative genius won the game for the visitors. The Welshman was surely the best player on tour.

The scrum was vital in the game, as we knew it would be, with the Lions dominating thanks to the superb scrum work of Adam Jones.

It took the Lions just a minute to go over the first try of the game, when Alex Corbisiero crossed the line. Leigh Halfpenny’s superb kicking was again the tale of the game as the Lions raced to a 19-3 lead.

Australia did attack often in the first half, but perhaps culminating in their eventual downfall was their decision time after time to kick for touch when they were awarded a penalty.

They chose to ignore kicking for three points on five occasions in the first half, which is criminal when you have Leali’Ifano on the pitch, who is more than capable of hitting five from five.

James O’ Connor went over for the hosts right before halftime, and it was that momentum that the Aussies used to claw themselves back into the tie in the second half.

They were awarded a penalty right at the start of the half, and learning from mistakes, skipper James Horwill told Leali’Ifano to kick for goal.

Leali’Ifano scored another penalty shortly after, but it was then that the Lions found a second gear.

Halfpenny kicked a penalty to steady the ship. and with Connor Murray coming on for the Lions, the hosts had no answers.

Johnny Sexton was the next man to go over for a Try, after some super work down the left by Halfpenny. The Welshman then converted, and the Lions looked in control.

Australia attacked once again, and were given a penalty after some sustained pressure, but again, they opted not to kick for three points and came away with nothing.

Following some Aussie pressure, it took a moment of genius from Halfpenny who, with some super running, passed the ball outside to George North, who obliged by going over. Halfpenny missed his kick, but at that stage, the game was won.

Connor Murray then produced his own bit of magic with a sensational pass to Jamie Roberts who ran through a massive gap in the Australia defense to score the last try of the game.

Halfpenny scored the conversion, which proved the last points of the game.

The coaches were celebrating eight minutes before time, perhaps more relief than joy that the decision to drop O’ Driscoll did not come back to haunt them, and the Lions held on for a dramatic series win.

Man of the Match: Leigh Halfpenny.

Man of The Series: Leigh Halpenny.

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