Rugby Union

So close yet so far for both teams.

Sonny Bill Williams tweeted what everyone was thinking as All Blacks and the Lions draw series

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The debate about draws in sport sprung to life earlier today after New Zealand and The British and Irish Lions drew 15-15 in the third test at Eden Park, Auckland.

The end result saw the series tied 1-1 and when the final whistle blew, the stadium fell into almost complete silence with players and fans alike.

Sonny Bill Williams, the New Zealand centre, who was red carded early in the first half of the second test, took to Twitter after the match concluded suggesting a novel way of deciding the engrossing series.

Williams was suspended for four weeks during the week for his shoulder charge on Anthony Watson.

Naturally, with the series on the line, the third test was as tight and tough as ever with neither team wanting to give anything away to their opposition.

The All Blacks led 12-6 at half-time courtesy of tries by Ngani Laumape and Jordie Barrett, who were each making their starting debuts in just their second test match.

The home team should have been further in front but handling errors cost them a couple of more tries.

The Lions, who have shown a great ability to hang in there during patches of games when not playing their best rugby, did so again when Owen Farrell and Elliott Daly scored penalties to tie the scores.

The last twenty minutes was a case of last man standing with both teams pushing for the vital opportunity that would put them back in front.

All Black forward Jerome Kaino was sin-binned for a forearm to the face of Alun Wyn Jones and the Lions had a sense of momentum with their legion of fans roaring them home from the stands.

New Zealand v British & Irish Lions - Third Test Match

Beauden Barrett kicked a penalty to put New Zealand back in front but, with the clock ticking down below five minutes, Farrell was nerveless as he slotted home a penalty of his own.

Controversy then raged when French referee Romain Poite changed a penalty ruling for offside which would have resulted at a shot of winning the series for Barrett into a scrum for the All Blacks, which confused everyone in the ground.

Soon after the final whistle blew, the emotions were clear to see. In results such of this, there is always a number of "what ifs."

Unlike the second test, The Lions did not make the most of their opportunity when their opponents were down to 14 men.

New Zealand v British & Irish Lions

There was a lack of fluidity to their game but that was somewhat understandable with so much on the line.

However, to be fair to the visitors, not many predicted them to come as close to victory as they did.

Victory in this series would have seen them complete just their second series win in New Zealand in 100 years.

The formidable challenge of beating the All Blacks on home soil is written in the history books as they had not lost at Eden Park since 1994 and had not lost consecutive tests on home soil in 19 years.

New Zealand v British & Irish Lions

Although slightly frustrated, Lions coach Warren Gatland was rightly proud of his players given the daunting schedule they faced.

The best way of summing up the end result was courtesy of All Blacks coach Steve Hansen who said, "It's come down to the wire and we've ended up with one hand on the trophy each, which is a bit like kissing your sister.

"But it's been a wonderful advertisement for rugby."

That last statement cannot be disputed by anyone.

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Topics:
Ireland Rugby
England Rugby
Wales Rugby
IRB Rugby World Cup
Scotland Rugby
Rugby Union
British & Irish Lions

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