Dublin: 16°C Thursday 5 August 2021

BO'D and Foxy Davies are best buddies but Gatland has a new favourite

The Kiwi declared Alex Corbisiero was his man of the match. He had a good point.

Brian O'Driscoll and Jonathan Davies want to fill that cup with champers.
Brian O'Driscoll and Jonathan Davies want to fill that cup with champers.
Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

HINDSIGHT IS A wonder. The tough calls are the brave calls. The defeats are strengthening exercises. The dropped players embrace you with hugs and share gulps of champagne from crystalline cups.

While the majority of the joyous Lions dressing room tried to ruffle the ever-cool 007, Daniel Craig, and Munster teammates Simon Zebo and Conor Murray planned a trip to Las Vegas, Brian O’Driscoll sought out Jonathan Davies for congratulations. The centre cheered, grimaced, sighed and celebrated with the rest of the watching Lions supporters as his teammates destroyed Australia 41-16 to capture the series.

While Davies admitted he felt like ‘public enemy number one’ for much of the build-up to the game, he was helped no end by O’Driscoll’s decision to row in behind the team and back the talented Welsh usurper. Indeed it was Davies who played a big part in busting a hole up the left flank in the lead-up to the Jonny Sexton try that shredded the sails on the Australian ship.

In the end, the victory was not decided by Davies, Sexton or the ever impressive George North. The bedrock of the Third Test win came from the Lions pack. Alex Corbisiero, a man who only arrived in Australia after Cian Healy flew home injured, was immense. His early try, and his toying with Ben Alexander at scrum time, will go down in Lions lore as one of the great prop performances.

Here is what Warren Gatland’s man-of-the-match made of his day at the office:

YouTube credit: RugbyMedia

Another player to benefit from the absence of an influential Irishman was lock Geoff Parling. The Englishman came in as lineout leader when Paul O’Connell fractured his arm in the First Test. Only one lineout was lost all evening and Parling was effective at the breakdown, came to Mike Phillips rescue when two Wallabies gobbled him up, and he executed a stunning, Peter Stringeresque tap tackle on a flying Jesse Mogg.

His is what the bearded wonder had to say after the match:

YouTube credit: RugbyMedia

Champagne, James Bond and ‘Las Vegas baby’! Victorious Lions party in style

Like the DVD, but live: Sexton partying like it’s 1997 after sealing series win

About the author:

Patrick McCarry

Read next: