Crusaders unbeaten run snapped by Lions in try-less game

Sam Warburton places a wreath at the Canterbury Earthquake National Memorial in Christchurch

"A lot has been made about Sam not being involved", Gatland told reporters.

"The hosts have not been beaten once this season", said their man on the ground, "so this win will be a real boost for the Lions who mis-fired in their opening two games". "It's a challenge we're looking forward to". We have had to stay strong within the group. "But, hey, if that's the way it's going to go, we're just going to have to adjust". I have been hammered by the New Zealand media as well so it has been a targeted campaign against me personally.

"He could come right tomorrow, you just don't know, but the key thing if he does is that he hasn't played rugby for a long time".

"And sometimes that brings out the best in me as a competitor in sport".

Lions manager Warren Gatland had particular praise for one of his Irish stars when he was questioned about the first test team in the aftermath of the Crusaders win.

With the Tests in mind, the Lions made points a priority and Farrell landing three penalties in the first half to one for the Crusaders by Mo'unga.

But Farrell also gave Gatland cause for thought by the way he slotted in elsewhere in the backline when the Lions lost Wales centre Jonathan Davies to a head knock in the first half.

The Lions face the Maori on June 17, a clash in which Gatland has already admitted he could well field a starting line-up that would closely resemble his Test XV.

"He pushes the boys above and beyond in training to show, really, how good they can be and show how we want to play".

"I think they are just coming to grips with that".

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"We see the next four matches as a way to measure where we're going".

"For that to happen, he's caught Conor Murray's elbow, that was a bit unlucky in that situation".

"The more time that we are together, the more the players get familiar with voices, hopefully we'll finish those chances".

Here's the New Zealand squad in full, featuring three Barrett brothers along with players who had injury concerns hanging over them, including captain Kieran Read and Dane Coles.

"It's semantics, naming him, but he deserves to be named - he's our best hooker, we felt, and deserves to be", Hansen said.

And he said: "The fact you are playing so many games in so little time, the fact that the games aren't the easiest in the world, means you have to be on your mettle for each one". It's been challenging to all of us.

Lions Head Coach Warren Gatland praised his side's defence after they overcame the Crusaders in Christchurch on Saturday.

On social media, former England number eight Nick Easter revelled in the performance: "Blueprint for the series". Otherwise, quite simply, they will not win the games.

The All Blacks squad has a Super Rugby mix of five Blues players, six Chiefs, seven Hurricanes, 10 Crusaders and five Highlanders. They couldn't get over the line. At the moment, we are reacting well.

"Steve (Hansen) will know that. We put them under pressure and backed it up with some defensive work which was brilliant".

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