Furlong delighted after first Lions start
The Lions were only too aware of the form of the Crusaders coming into Saturday’s game and tight-head prop Tadhg Furlong was delighted at the way they responded to the challenge.
Having lost to the Blues on Wednesday, the Lions were keen for a response, and they were very strong up front edging both scrum and lineout battles.
Owen Farrell kicked four penalties, with Richie Mo’unga scoring a lone penalty for the home side, whose 14-match winning streak this season came to an end.
And Furlong, who was making his first start for the Lions, was impressed at how they went about their task.
He said: “It was important for us as a group, especially off the back of last week, it’s a big result.
“The Crusaders are a quality side, they have a lot of All Blacks in their side and they’re coming with a big run of wins, I think it was 14 coming into this game.
“As a squad I think it’s a big result, it’s probably a case of everyone being a bit more familiar now. Everyone is after a start in the team now and probably getting into the groove a small bit more but there’s a lot more to improve on.
“The hunger of the lads to get off the line and hunt them down and not give them an opportunity to play rugby at us. Out there, especially within the forward pack, the forward unit, there was a real buzz, there was a real energy that we couldn’t afford them to play in a dinner suit because we’ve seen the clips and seen them in Super Rugby and how dangerous they can be.”
Furlong had come off the bench against the NZ Provincial Barbarians in the first game of the Tour, but got a chance to start in this encounter, going up against All Black loose-head prop Joe Moody.
The Lions scrum had the better of that contest, winning a number of penalties.
And Furlong was happy to have been able to perform when given the opportunity.
He added: “It was brilliant, an incredible moment for me and my family. It’s something you dream of since you were in nappies.
“With that there’s a lot of responsibility to the jersey and I’m delighted were able to get out on our side of it with a win.”