Saints star Lawes on bench again for Lions’ crucial clash

Courtney Lawes will be among the Lions replacements on Saturday
Courtney Lawes will be among the Lions replacements on Saturday

Saints star Courtney Lawes will once again be on the bench as the Lions look to seal a stunning series win in New Zealand.

Lawes was a second-half replacement in Wellington last weekend, helping Warren Gatland’s men turn the tide to claim a 24-21 victory against the All Blacks.

That success levelled the series at 1-1, meaning Saturday’s clash in Auckland will be a winner-takes-all encounter.

Lawes will again hope to play a part, having impressed on his Lions debut last Saturday.

The Saints lock has continued the fine form he displayed for club and country in the red of the Lions.

And Gatland has decided to name an unchanged squad for Saturday’s mouthwatering showdown.

New Zealand: J Barrett; Dagg, Lienert-Brown, Laumape, J Savea; B Barrett, Smith; Moody, Taylor, Franks; Retallick, Whitelock; Kaino, Cane, Read (c).

Replacements: Harris, Crockett, Faumina, S Barrett, A Savea, Perenara, Cruden, Fekitoa.

Lions: Williams; Watson, Davies, Farrell, Daly; Sexton, Murray; M Vunipola, George, Furlong; Itoje, Wyn Jones; Warburton (c), O’Brien, Faletau.

Replacements: Owens, McGrath, Sinckler, Lawes, Stander, Webb, Te’o, Nowell.