British and Irish Lions Warm Up in Ideal Fashion: LWOS Player Ratings

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HAMILTON, NEW ZEALAND - JUNE 20: James Haskell of the Lions celebrates victory during the match between the Chiefs and the British & Irish Lions at Waikato Stadium on June 20, 2017 in Hamilton, New Zealand. (Photo by David Rogers/Getty Images)

The British and Irish Lions warm up for New Zealand ended in the best possible way after the Chiefs trouncing.

A four try rout saw Jack Nowell (2), a penalty try, and Jared Payne all crossing against a Chiefs side missing all of their All Blacks contingent.

Nevertheless, the British and Irish Lions produced some of their most fluid rugby so far on this tour. Many of this squad are resigned to the fact that their inclusion on Tuesday means they may be set to miss out on Saturday’s First Test.

Nowell, Biggar and Henderson gave Warren Gatland food for thought this close to Saturday’s Eden Park showdown. It may just force the coaching team to rethink their strategy, but how did this XV get on?

Joe Marler 6/10

The British and Irish Lions were certainly dominant at the scrum which is a credit to the Englishman’s ability.

Rory Best 5/10

A potential British and Irish Lions captain before the tour but will be fortunate to make the First Test squad. Line out delivery still leaves much to question.

Dan Cole 6/10

Strong presence in the scrum by the Leicester man but doesn’t possess the ability to gross the gainline like Furlong or Sinckler which looks to have counted against him.

Courtney Lawes 8/10

Another big performance for the Northampton man. Producing some of his best rugby. Had to leave for a HIA in the second period and has been plagued by injuries on this tour.

Iain Henderson 8/10

Huge both in defence in attack and may just force his way into the Test reckoning. Made as many tackles as anyone in red and his physicality cannot go unnoticed.

James Haskell 7/10

Crossed the gainline several times and played pivotal role in Payne try when his clear out allowed the British and Irish Lions quick retention of the ball.

Justin Tipuric 6/10

Didn’t get the opportunity to show his skill ball in hand but defensively remained resolute. In an immensely competitive area of the squad so looks set for starting berth.

CJ Stander 7/10

Carried more affluently than usual which is pleasing. Made 40 metres from his 14 carries in Waikato but doesn’t offer the dynamism of Faletau.

Greg Laidlaw 7/10

Came on tour viewed as the third choice nine and has done little to shake that reputation. Box kicking wasn’t excellent and his speed of service from the ruck still needs addressing.

Dan Biggar 8/10

An assured performance but reputation and standing still probably has him behind both Owen Farrell and Jonny Sexton. Put his backs in the right areas and was prepared to take the ball as close to the gainline as possible.

Robbie Henshaw 6/10

Looks like he’s failed to wrestle the 12 shirt back off Ben Te’o. Didn’t cross the gainline as much as he would have liked and, on this tour, has caused defences the problems his English counterpart has.

Jared Payne 7/10

Got himself on the score sheet and should have had another. Didn’t miss a tackle all evening and looked the most assured of the British and Irish Lions centres on Tuesday.

Elliot Daly 8/10

Another strong display on relatively little service. Has had to work off scraps for much of the tour but his kick chase remains a key part of his game. Showed electric pace when possible.

Jack Nowell 9/10

This performance may have come a little too late to get him a place in the First Test but perhaps not for the second and third. Two tries showed his predatory instinct and his constant hunger to go hunting for the ball sets him apart from other wingers.

Liam Williams 8/10

Cut the Chiefs defence apart for Payne’s try. Management this week said they see Williams as a winger despite him operating at 15. Maybe that versatility will earn him a British and Irish Lions start.

Lions Total 106/150

The British and Irish Lions will name the XV players who will start the First Test later this week. Gatland has had the opportunity to view all his players and since everyone is having a go here is my Test XV..

McGrath, George, Furlong, Itoje, Kruis, O’Mahony (c), O’Brien, Faletau, Murray, Farrell, Daly, Te’o, Davies, Watson, Williams.

“Main photo credit”

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