Teams for the third test:-
Teams for the third test:-
New Zealand: 15 Jordie Barrett, 14 Israel Dagg, 13 Anton Lienert-Brown, 12 Ngani Laumape, 11 Julian Savea, 10 Beauden Barrett, 9 Aaron Smith; 1 Joe Moody, 2 Codie Taylor, 3 Owen Franks, 4 Brodie Retallick, 5 Sam Whitelock, 6 Jerome Kaino, 7 Sam Cane, 8 Kieran Read (c).
Replacements: 16 Nathan Harris, 17 Wyatt Crockett, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Scott Barrett, 20 Ardie Savea, 21 TJ Perenara, 22 Aaron Cruden, 23 Malakai Fekitoa.
Jordie Barrett makes his full debut (maybe on kicking duty too?), having come on for the final 18 minutes of New Zealand's 78-0 win over Samoa.
Jordie Barrett and Ngani Laumape will make their first starts for New Zealand while Julian Savea also returns for Saturday's series decider against the British and Irish Lions.
Barrett is named at full-back, having made his debut as a replacement against Samoa last month. Israel Dagg reverts to the wing while Laumape replaces the suspended Sonny Bill Williams at inside centre.
The third change to the backline sees Savea selected to the left wing in place of Rieko Ioane, with Malakai Fekitoa named on the bench.
I'm a bit surprised by Savea who has looked a little leaden footed recently but perhaps thinking back to former starring role and more experience
British and Irish Lions: 15 Liam Williams, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Jonathan Davies, 12 Owen Farrell, 11 Elliot Daly, 10 Johnny Sexton, 9 Conor Murray; 1 Mako Vunipola, 2 Jamie George, 3 Tadhg Furlong, 4 Maro Itoje, 5 Alun Wyn Jones, 6 Sam Warburton (c), 7 Sean O'Brien, 8 Taulupe Faletau.
Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Jack McGrath, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Courtney Lawes, 20 CJ Stander, 21 Rhys Webb, 22 Ben Te'o, 23 Jack Nowell.
The Lions have exactly the same lineup, imo probably a real mistake
My thoughts would have been:-
McGrath for Vunipola
Lawes for Jones
Te'o (at 12) for Sexton with Farrell at 10
After this selection I can only see a very comfortable win for NZ, with the proposed changes i still would have fancied the all blacks but think it would have been more competitive.
If Jack McGrath had started his superior scrummaging ability would have been capable of laying the foundation for the ball-carrying prowess of Vunipola to make its mark late on when the play is more broken and loose.
Mako gave away numerous penalty infringements and was carded plus he's up against a really top opposition prop, I really think this their biggest error.
His spot was arguably most at threat after an error-strewn display which culminated in him being sent to the sin by referee Jerome Garces. Four of the tourists' 13 penalties at the Westpac Stadium came from the loosehead prop and it was that indiscipline, which so nearly settled the series in the All Blacks' favour,
Alun-Wyn Jones has been one of Gatland's go-to men showing perhaps surprising loyalty to his Welsh lock, despite growing calls for the more dynamic options of Maro Itoje and Courtney Lawes to be paired in the Tests. Itoje has since muscled his way into the Test XV to partner Jones, but the far more dynamic option of including England counterpart Courtney Lawes has been turned down again.
Wales lock Jones endured a difficult time in the first Test, but was better in the second in Wellington, his replacement Lawes certainly had an impact when called upon, with his tenacious defence and presence at the breakdown helping the Lions turn the game around with 15 points in the final quarter.
The experimental midfield pairing of Johnny Sexton and Owen Farrell struggled to impose themselves in what turned out to be an attritional second Test.
For all the pre-match hype and anticipation, the experimental midfield pairing struggled to impose themselves in what turned out to be an attritional second Test.
They especially struggled in defence against New Zealand's direct attack in Wellington frequently knocked back in contact, they also found their attacking games hampered by the atrocious conditions, while Sonny Bill Williams' dismissal forced the All Blacks into retreat, thereby halting any prospect of an open game for the Lions duo to operate in.
Despite this, both Sexton and Farrell played the duration of the game as Gatland opted against introducing Ben Te'o, despite conditions suiting the hard-hitting England centre.
However, with Hurricanes battering ram Ngani Laumape, poised to replace the suspended Williams, the need to match fire with fire should surely have seen Te'o whisked back into the team in his hometown.