Sam Warburton: "It was a proper game of chess"

The British and Irish Lions slipped to a second defeat in New Zealand on Tuesday

BY Cian Roche 13:41 Tuesday 13 June 2017, 13:41 13 Jun 2017

Image: David Davies/PA Wire/PA Images

British and Irish Lions captain Sam Warburton says Tuesday's clash with the Highlanders was like a "game of chess" and that the home side deserved credit for their win in Dunedin.

The Highlanders came from behind to beat the Lions by a single point in New Zealand and speaking to Sky Sports after the game, Warburton was able to pick some positives from the performance.

"We scored tries, we scored more than we have done and when we went direct, we looked pretty good," he said.

"It was a proper game of chess. It was a tight Test match, but need to start coming away from these with wins.

"I think there was a string of four penalties in that second half where we were in some decent territory and gave away too much territory and momentum. They ended getting points off of it.

"Discipline on Saturday we kept to single figures. We said for this game we have to keep it single figures and for one reason or another it wasn't. We have to give the Highlanders credit."

Warburton admitted the Highlanders "forced the pressure" to win the penalties, and says their play at the breakdown wasn't up to scratch.

"We gave away too much possession at the breakdown and knew our first and second arrivals weren't there quick enough. That was something that we spoke about during the game."

The Lions now face into their toughest game to date when they take on the Maori All Blacks on Saturday morning.

"[The game] is huge. Saturday [against Crusaders] was huge for us in terms of momentum, but the New Zealand Maori are going to be the biggest challenge of this tour.

"They've picked a great squad, a lot of guys with All Blacks experience are in there so we're looking forward to that challenge."

Highlanders players celebrate a try as British and Irish Lions captain Sam Warburton reacts during their game in Dunedin. Image:  Brett Phibbs/AP/Press Association Images

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