I'm a happy clown this week, says Warren Gatland

I'm a happy clown this week, says Warren Gatland

Lions coach Warren Gatland, who was mocked as a clown in the New Zealand media earlier this week, was delighted to see his team level the series.

All Blacks boss Steve Hansen had rubbed opposite number Gatland's nose in it after his side's win in the first Test.

The former policeman shot out: "I always find it amusing when teams say they are going to beat us up in the tight-five," in lording it over old rival and fellow Kiwi Gatland.

The tourists' boss then appeared to wave the white flag in the mind games, not least when responding to the New Zealand Herald depicting him as a clown - for the second time in six months - but he was in decidedly upbeat form after today's victory.

"I am a happy clown this week," Gatland joked.

"It is great to tie the series up and we go to Auckland with everything to play for. Even with the red card, we were the better team, deserved to win and played some good rugby."

Gatland knows the Lions have plenty to work on to test the All Blacks again next week, especially after seeing them concede 13 penalties.

Beau Barrett kicked seven of them, contributing all 21 of New Zealand's points, but second-half tries from Toby Faletau and Conor Murray proved crucial for the Lions.

"We gave away some soft penalties which is disappointing and something we need to fix for next week," Gatland added.

"It is a strange game, isn't it? Normally with those sort of stats the All Blacks win by 20 or 30 points, so for us to be in the game...

"I thought we scored a couple of lovely tries, which was nice, and some of the decision-making on the ball was excellent.

"Some of our kicking wasn't the best tonight and gives us a lot to work on next week."

then poked the Lions once too often with his taunts about physicality after New Zealand's first Test victory.

The ruse fooled everyone - even the All Blacks. Because the Lions boss was not shell-shocked, and his men not beaten and bested.

Battered yes, but not cowed - and the tourists then spent the week bashing lumps out of each other in a bid to restore their physical acumen.

More on this topic

Gatland rescued Lions brand, now to protect itGatland rescued Lions brand, now to protect it

Gatland fires back at Jones after ruling out coaching EnglandGatland fires back at Jones after ruling out coaching England

Warren Gatland announced as Lions head coach for 2021 South Africa tourWarren Gatland announced as Lions head coach for 2021 South Africa tour

Warren Gatland to become Lions head coach for third timeWarren Gatland to become Lions head coach for third time

More in this Section

Amnesty International urge FIFA not to let China host Club World CupAmnesty International urge FIFA not to let China host Club World Cup

FA chief Clarke wants concussion substitutes introduced ‘as quickly as possible’FA chief Clarke wants concussion substitutes introduced ‘as quickly as possible’

Mohamed Salah returns to Liverpool training after ankle injuryMohamed Salah returns to Liverpool training after ankle injury

FAI to claim privilege over two more documents in ODCE investigationFAI to claim privilege over two more documents in ODCE investigation


Lifestyle

A long-time fad dieter, Katy Harrington tried unsuccessfully to embrace body positivity, so she’s trying something new (and neutral)Plusses of positivity: Forget body positivity - it's time to go neutral

Discovering the joys of the Monaghan and Armagh landscapes while venturing north, comes highly-recommended by Noel BakerTrekking north to Monaghan and Armagh is good for the soul

Sex advice with Suzi Godson.Sex file: Where have my orgasms gone?

Producers of the new landmark Attenborough series tell Sarah Marshall about some of the fantastic animal encounters they filmed.Visit the wildlife locations featured in the BBC’s Seven Worlds, One Planet

More From The Irish Examiner