British & Irish Lions 2013: Gatland ‘disappointed’ by first-half display
British & Irish Lions 2013: Warren Gatland says he was disappointed with his side after a 14-12 loss to ACT Brumbies
Warren Gatland admitted he was disappointed to see the British and Irish Lions lose their 100 per cent record after a narrow loss to the Brumbies at Canberra Stadium.
Brumbies centre Tevita Kuridani scored the game’s only try in the fifth minute before Jesse Mogg added a further three points, with Stuart Hogg landing one successful kick to keep the Lions in touch at half-time.
However, full-back Mogg posted a further six points to leave the hosts 11 points clear and it prompted Gatland to make sweeping changes in a bid to rescue the penultimate game before Saturday’s first Test.
And substitute Owen Farrell kicked two penalties but the Lions came up just short in a 14-12 loss, and Gatland revealed his anguish at a below-par first-half performance from the tourists.
“It’s disappointing,” said Gatland.
“In fairness to the Brumbies, they played really well and put us under pressure at the breakdown. There are no excuses – our first-half performance wasn’t good enough and we got what we deserved.
“We gave them a rollicking and made a few changes, and we were much better [after the interval]. But in the first half, we played too much rugby in our own half. We needed to be a bit smarter.”
Asked whether he could have made changes earlier in the second half, Gatland added: “Well we were having that debate.
“It was about letting the players who were on in the first half work their way through it.
“It was a tough decision. The guys who came off the bench got us back into the match. We got to take it on the chin and focus on Saturday.”