No looking back for tamed Lions

THE British and Irish Lions' defence coach, Shaun Edwards, said yesterday morning that there was no point in drawing inspiration from the past as the side prepares for Saturday's second Test against the Springboks in Pretoria.

THE British and Irish Lions' defence coach, Shaun Edwards, said yesterday morning that there was no point in drawing inspiration from the past as the side prepares for Saturday's second Test against the Springboks in Pretoria.

Edwards told the media in Cape Town that there were Lions sides that had gone on to win a series after losing a first Test. The tourists were beaten in the first of three Tests in Durban last Saturday.

"I know that Geech [Ian McGeechan, the Lions' head coach] has been on a tour where the Lions lost a first Test and then won the series 2-1," said Edwards. "But there's no point in drawing inspiration from the past. We have to live in the here and now."

And Lions scrummaging coach Graham Rowntree has vowed that the side's scrum, which took a battering at the hands of the Springboks at various stages during the Durban Test, will be "fixed".

"The way we [the Lions] handled the driving mauls from line-outs was embarrassing," Rowntree said. "We had good, honest, hard training sessions on Monday and we saw that the [forward] replacements who came on in Durban already made an improvement.

"The spirits are high and the guys are very positive that we'll fix up those set-pieces [scrums and line-outs].

"I did say that there is a possibility that we'll make changes in all three sections of the scrum when we sit down to select the team.

"I was pleased to see Phil [Vickery] made a good impact last night [against the Emerging Springboks at Newlands] and we're not going to hang him out for what happened last week. It was a collective effort. After what happened in Durban I could see on Monday that it hurt the players and during training I could see the pain on their faces."

The Lions have decided to remain in Cape Town after Tuesday's match against the Emerging Boks and round off their preparations for the Loftus Test.

"Of course we're preparing at sea level and on Saturday we'll we playing at altitude and we must make the most of it," Edwards said. "The [wintry] conditions were horrific at Newlands and it won't get much better in the next day or two but at least it will be drier in Pretoria where we'll be able to play our multi-phase game and an attacking style of rugby." - Sapa

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