Lions tour: Forwards must front up - All Blacks flanker Sam Cane

  • 08/07/2017
Sam Cane has started both Tests against the Lions.
Sam Cane has started both Tests against the Lions. Photo credit: Getty Images

You can have all the secret game plans you like - but in the end, rugby is down to physicality, bravery and doing the basics right.

All Blacks flanker Sam Cane says a dominant showing up front will get his side half-way over the line against the British and Irish Lions.

The two outfits clash on Saturday night for a blockbuster series decider, with the Lions squaring the series last weekend 24-21 in Wellington.

Cane told reporters that the All Blacks' offensive arsenal was yet to truly fire - but could only do so if the forwards lay a platform for them.

"Rugby is pretty much determined around the contact area, so if we can dominate more collisions, that'll go a long way," Cane said.

"We just need to be a bit better with our ball carriers, getting over the gainline a little quicker, it nullifies the loose forwards' chance of getting over the ball. But it's been pretty evenly matched and it'll be another key one."

The 25-year-old Cane has pulled on the No.7 shirt in both Lions Tests to date, pitting his wits against brawny Irish counterpart Sean O'Brien.

He called on his side to keep calm in the face of relentless Lions defensive pressure, and wait patiently for their moment to strike.

"You're expecting an arm wrestle I suppose. If you think it's going to come easy, then maybe you will get frustrated," the Chiefs co-captain said.

"If we're prepared to battle it out for 60, 70, 79 minutes before we crack them, if we go in with that sort of expectation, (then) we won't get that frustrated."

NZN