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Lions run riot in Durban

British & Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland

Lions run riot in Durban

The British & Irish Lions impressed yet again as they thrashed the Sharks 71-31 in Durban just two weeks out from the first Test against South Africa.

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Warren Gatland’s side scored 11 tries in total but were put under far more pressure far than they have been previously on this tour with the Sharks crossing for five tries of their own.

The Sharks, who lost 54-7 to the Lions three days earlier, were level 26-26 at the break with three of their tries coming from mistakes by the tourists.

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Chris Harris opened the scoring after Duhan van der Merwe powered through a gap before drawing in the final defender to put the Scotland centre over.

But the Sharks hit straight back as they took advantage from a loose pass from Elliott Daly which allowed Anthony Volmink to run in unopposed from 50 metres out.

And the Sharks proceeded to take the lead when Thaakir Abrahams latched onto a grubber kick from Lionel Cronje to score.

It was nip and tuck at this point with Lions captain Jamie George powering over from short range before Jaden Hendrikse hit back for the Sharks.

Van der Merwe then added to his Lions try tally before Volmink grabbed his second for the hosts. Tadhg Beirne then hit a terrific angle to ensure the scores were tied at 26-26 at ha time.

The Lions’ driving line-out proved to be an effective weapon with Jack Conan the beneficiary as he crashed over from a few metres out.

Sharks scrum-half Hendrikse put an end to any chance the South African side had of winning when he decided to elbow Liam Williams in the head.

Referee Wayne Barnes was having none of it and promptly showed Hendrikse a red card.

Daly scored to give the Lions some breathing space, but the Sharks refused to throw in the towel with centre Werner Kok scoring from long range.

George replied with his second Lions try of the evening before Anthony Watson stepped his way past five defenders for a cracking try.

Beirne and Tom Curry scored further tries for Gatland’s side before Watson sealed the deal with a try from 70 metres out.

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