Howley lays it on the line

Rob Howley has outlined very clearly to the British & Irish Lions what it is going to take to win the second test in Melbourne tonight - and with it the Tom Richards Trophy. [more]

Howley lays it on the line

Rob Howley has outlined very clearly to the British & Irish Lions what it is going to take to win the second test in Melbourne tonight – and with it the Tom Richards Trophy.

“This Lions jersey demands, and what it will demand on Saturday night, is that you have no respect for your body,” said Howley.

Sam Warburton’s side are ready to throw themselves into the battle at the Etihad Stadium tonight in a bid to make a piece of history by becoming the first Lions team to win a series since 1997.

“The ingredients of international rugby are being disciplined, being composed, having patience and taking your opportunities. That’s what we need on Saturday night,” said Howley.

“In the hurly burly of the battle you need emotional intelligence, good decision making accuracy and that’s what Test match football is about and the side that has been selected has Test match animals that have made those decision in games and understand what is required. Let’s hope we are right

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“International rugby is about keeping your discipline and this group of players over the last six weeks on and off the field have been absolutely fantastic in their preparation for games and in looking after themselves off the field.”

Howley knows just how furious the Qantas Wallabies reaction is likely to be after their defeat in Brisbane last weekend. Twelve years ago the former Welsh scrum half was at No 9 for the Lions in Melbourne as they chased a series win.

Even though they led at half-time, the Lions fell to a record defeat and ended up losing the series 2-1. But the team of 2013 are determined to seize their golden chance tonight.

“If you dare to dream it turns into a nightmare. I think the players are very focussed. They have been very task orientated this week and they have got on with their job,” said Howley.

“That is what you have to do in a Test match and on Saturday night they will have to focus on their job every 30 seconds, every minute, because if you dare to think about what you are going to create then that doesn’t happen. It is making sure you do your job and you are accountable.

“The Wallabies will come out and want to play rugby. That’s the game they play. There was a learning process that went on last weekend – we learned about each other and we will both have tweaked things here and there.

“No doubt they will present something different to us and we must be alert. We mustn’t allow them to take quick tap penalties and not allow them to take quick line outs. We must be totally aware all the time.”
 

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