So it is all down to this. Eden Park at 8:35 in the morning. The Third Test: New Zealand v British and Irish Lions.
All the ‘Mind Games’ are over and it is simply down to two squads of rugby players and who have the nerves of steel for 80 minutes to emerge as victors.
Johnny Sexton summed it up – “It’s once-in-a-lifetime stuff, so you have to cherish it.”
Let’s just hope that whichever way it goes, the game is won by an act of brilliance and not a mistake that would burden the offender for years to come.
The New Zealand squad is: Jordie Barrett; Israel Dagg, Anton Lienert-Brown, Ngani Laumape, Julian Savea; Beauden Barrett, Aaron Smith; Joe Moody, Codie Taylor, Owen Franks, Brodie Retallick, Sam Whitelock, Jerome Kaino, Sam Cane, Kieran Read.
Replacements: Nathan Harris, Wyatt Crockett, Charlie Faumuina, Scott Barrett, Ardie Savea, TJ Perenara, Aaron Cruden, Malakai Fekitoa.
The Record So Far:
7 June Blues Lost 22-16
10 June Crusaders Won 12-3
13 June Highlanders Lost 23-22
17 June Maori All Blacks Won 32-10
20 June Chiefs Won 34-6
24 June New Zealand Lost 30-15
27 June Hurricanes Drew 31-31
1 July New Zealand Won 24-21
8 July New Zealand