Lions Player Ratings: Warren Gatland's side take the series to a decider

The tourists prevailed in an intense encounter in Wellington

BY Simon Maguire 13:45 Saturday 1 July 2017, 13:45 1 Jul 2017

Lions' Conor Murray scores. Image: ©INPHO/James Crombie

The British and Irish Lions have beaten New Zealand in Wellington to take the series to a decider next weekend. 

Tries from Taulupe Faletau and Conor Murray helped the tourists to a three point win over the reigning World Champions.

We rate Warren Gatland's men after they levelled the series:

Liam Williams - 7

Unsteady under the high ball but menacing in attack. Looked to keep the New Zealand defence guessing whenever he joined the attack.

Anthony Watson - 7

Dangerous whenever he was in possession despite shipping a nasty shoulder from SBW. 

Jonathan Davies - 7

Built on last week's performance and linked up well with Farrell and Sexton in midfield. Beautiful offload early on to show his skill.

Owen Farrell - 8

Slotted into the centre seamlessly and worked perfectly in tandem with Sexton. Spread the play well and kicked superbly in wet conditions bar one wayward conversion.

Lions' Owen Farrell kicks the winning penalty. Image: ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

Elliott Daly - 7

Quiet display but did little wrong. 

Johnny Sexton - 8

Stepped up on the big stage once again and drove the Lions to victory.  

Conor Murray - 9

Box-kicked accurately and got stuck in physically. Kept the defence guessing and outsmarted them for his pivotal try. 

Mako Vunipola - 3

Did his best to even up SBW's red card. Gave away careless, stupid and carelessly-stupid penalties. Should have been replaced earlier.

Jamie George - 7

His best display on tour yet. Upped his game around the field and took a brilliant line off Sexton in the lead up to Murray's try.

Tadgh Furlong - 7

Anchored the scrum and was powerful in the field. Emptied the tank by the time he was replaced.

Lions' Tadhg Furlong with Jerome Kaino of the All Blacks. Image: ©INPHO/Billy Stickland

Maro Itoje - 9

Justified his selection and makes you wonder why he didn't start last week. Abrasive, athletic and competitive throughout. 

Alun Wyn Jones - 7

Held his own this week and was a marked improvement on last week's display. 

Sam Warburton (c) - 8

Slowed New Zealand ball down all night but within the laws of the game. Good communication with Garces throughout and led his team expertly.

Sean O'Brien - 8

Powerful display from the Tullow Tank who can only have enhanced his reputation in New Zealand. Took the battle to the All Black pack and made the hard yards throughout.

Lions' Sean O'Brien. Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

Talaupe Faletau - 7

Another solid performance and took his try well. Probably should have been replaced late on when he had clearly faded.  

Bench - 9

The replacements ultimately got the Lions over the line. Sinckler, Lawes and McGrath kept the physicality levels high as the 14-man All Blacks began to tire. 

Former Lions' Number 8, Jamie Heaslip, joined Saturday's Off the Ball to give his verdict on the game:


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