All Blacks vs British and Irish Lions highlights: International Rugby Third Test live scores, blog

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    Match result:

    The All Blacks and British and Irish Lions have drawn the third Test at Eden Park in a tense and thrilling encounter 15 points apiece, and have subsequently drawn the 2017 Lions series.

    » Click here to read the full match report

    Final score
    All Blacks 15
    British and Irish Lions 15

    Match preview:

    The third Test is now upon as the 2017 British and Irish Lions tour draws to a close in this decider as the Lions try to create history when they take on New Zealand at Eden Park in Auckland with kick off from 5:35pm (AEST).

    Plenty has been written already after the Lions toppled the All Blacks in Wellington last Saturday night which certainly revived interest in the Test series and provided the Lions with a golden opportunity to do what not very many have managed to achieve, a series win in New Zealand.

    The Lions this week have had the luxury of naming an unchanged lineup for tonight’s match staying true with, ‘if it aint broke, don’t fix it’.

    The All Blacks have, in contrast shuffled the decks a fair bit, particularly in the backline where two rookies have been handed their first Test starts, namely Ngani Laumepe at second five, promoted after Ryan Crotty and Sonny Bill Williams were both ruled unavailable after injury and suspension respectively and Jordie Barrett has been named at fullback, the 20-year-old being thrown in the deep end after the All Blacks have struggled at times at the back.

    Other notable changes have seen Israel Dagg moved back to the right wing making way for the younger Barrett while Julian Savea has earned a recall on the left wing, Reiko Ioane dropped from the starting side this evening.

    Malakai Fekitoa, recalled to the team only this week after Williams was suspended, takes the No.23 shirt as the utility back cover on the bench.

    It certainly feels like a roll of the dice from the All Black coaching staff but in fairness to them, they have rarely made bad decisions though what a match for Laumepe and Barrett to start in.

    However, it is in the forward where the bulk of the work has to be done and the All Blacks will certainly hold no real fears there after dominating up front for long periods of the first Test while holding their own for over half the match in the second with seven men so they will be confident of being able to lay the platform to allow there young backline to flourish.

    For the Lions, they have all the momentum and now the belief that they can win and after being able to take a more relaxed approach into this decider after such a long season, and with the benefit of a settled squad will be more than prepared for the task at hand and I would suggest they are better odds than what the TAB has offered.

    Certainly, while both sides will be under pressure this evening, the expectation on the New Zealanders will be immense, and the Lions will know that.

    Prediction
    I suspect the All Blacks have a slight edge in the forwards and I think that will pay dividends this evening.

    New Zealand by 8.

    Enough talking, join us here live from 5:35pm AEST as we cover all the action here on The Roar and don’t forget to leave your thoughts on the match in the comments below.

    A Rotundity and happy ex hooker who just loves Rugby really, oh and my kids and Kendra of course who lets me watch as much Rugby as I want, mostly. Follow Digby Ross on Twitter @Diggercane.

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