Tuesday 24 April 2018

Furlong and Murray shine - Player ratings from epic All Blacks v Lions Third Test

Codie Taylor of New Zealand is tackled by Conor Murray
Codie Taylor of New Zealand is tackled by Conor Murray

Nick Purewal

The Irish contingent made us proud once again. Here are the player ratings from Eden Park.

LIONS

LIAM WILLIAMS: Struggled positionally in defence but always a threat on the counter attack. 6/10

ANTHONY WATSON: Always looked dangerous but was never able to receive the ball in either time or space. 7

JONATHAN DAVIES: Two massive hits on Jordie Barrett summed up another stunning showing from Wales' fine centre. 9

OWEN FARRELL: Nerveless personified at the death to nail the levelling penalty, and that after a shocking opening. 7

ELLIOT DALY: Booted a huge long-range penalty and ran the All Blacks ragged at times out wide. 8

JOHNNY SEXTON: Settled into the task after a wayward opening and shook off an ankle problem to boot. 7

CONOR MURRAY: Another fine performance from the world's best scrum-half. 8

MAKO VUNIPOLA: Scrummaged well and kept things ticking over in the loose. 7

JAMIE GEORGE: Wayward in the lineout but impressed otherwise. 7

TADHG FURLONG: Another huge shift from Ireland's premier tighthead. 8

MARO ITOJE: The beast of the Lions pack somehow returns home better than he arrived. 8

ALUN WYN JONES: A gritty performance given all the pressure. 7

SAM WARBURTON: Scrapped and slowed ball at the breakdown all night. 8

SEAN O'BRIEN: Set the tone early on with some fine ball-carrying. 7

TAULUPE FALETAU: Another hugely impressive performance from the peerless number eight. 8

Replacements

KEN OWENS: Just about avoided conceding a penalty that would have cost the Lions the series. 6

JACK MCGRATH: Solid enough game at the death. 7

KYLE SINCKLER: Struggled at the scrum but somehow turned that on its head. 6

COURTNEY LAWES: Put himself about in typical style. 6

CJ STANDER: Worked hard but was unable to cut loose. 6

RHYS WEBB: Unable to maintain Murray's accuracy after coming on as a head injury replacement. 6

BEN TE'O: As physical as ever but unable to cut loose. 6

JACK NOWELL: Precious little to do in a short cameo. 6

ALL BLACKS

JORDIE BARRETT: Scored a try on his first Test start and repeatedly threatened with ball in hand. 8/10

ISRAEL DAGG: Had few opportunities to shine in attack as defences dominated. 6

ANTON LIENERT-BROWN: A class act in the All Blacks' midfield who showed some lovely touches. 7

NGANI LAUMAPE: Scored a quality first-half try and looks a real star in the making. 7

JULIAN SAVEA: Had a couple of trademark blockbusting runs but the Lions largely handled him well. 6

BEAUDEN BARRETT: Mixed and matched his game expertly at times. His best performance of the series. 8

AARON SMITH: Had his hands full with opposite number Conor Murray but still made a mark. 7

JOE MOODY: Played his part in a powerful New Zealand scrummaging display. 7

CODIE TAYLOR: Impressive in the set-pieces and a livewire around the field. Strong performance. 7

OWEN FRANKS: Showed all his experience in the tight and loose exchanges. Solid shift. 7

BRODIE RETALLICK: Another lung-busting contribution from the All Blacks lock. Impressive throughout. 8

SAM WHITELOCK: Ran the New Zealand lineout expertly. A real workaholic. 7

JEROME KAINO: Blotted his copybook with a second-half yellow card but was otherwise impressive. 7

SAM CANE: A tireless contribution from the All Blacks openside flanker. Never stopped. 8

KIERAN READ: The All Blacks skipper's 100th cap could not bring Test series glory but he never stopped in the pursuit of a win. 7

Replacements

WYATT CROCKETT: Went on for Moody and made his presence felt in the scrums. 7

CHARLIE FAUMUINA: Made his introduction midway through the second period. 7

ARDIE SAVEA: Joined the action with 20 minutes left. 7

MALAKAI FEKITOA: Replaced Laumae 13 minutes from time. 7

NATHAN HARRIS: Went on for the frantic closing stages. 6

AARON CRUDEN: Took over from Julian Savea with seven minutes left. 6

TJ PERENARA: Replaced Smith as the clock ticked down. 6

SCOTT BARRETT: Joined the action with just a couple of minutes left. 6

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