Lions tour: All Blacks prop Joe Moody to adapt to British and Irish Lions tactics, scrum

  • 23/06/2017

 All Blacks loosehead Joe Moody hopes to "take the ref out" of the side's first British and Irish Lions Test on Saturday by quickly adapting to his scrummaging interpretation - whatever that may be.

South African Jaco Peyper will oversee the fixture, a referee most All Blacks are intimately acquainted with at club and Test level.

His view of scrummaging is expected to differ widely from that of Frenchman Mathieu Raynal, who frequently called up Moody and propping partner Owen Franks for penalties in the Crusaders' 12-3 tour loss to the Lions.

Irrespective of the merits of those penalties, Moody said he and Franks had failed to adapt to Raynal's interpretation and were duly punished.

They wouldn't make the same mistake in the black jumper.

The squad would also need to keep their discipline at the breakdown, with penalties for infringements likely to result in Owen Farrell three-pointers.

"With a bit of luck, we can take the ref out of it - for us, it's more about adapting to each scrum," the 28-year-old Moody told reporters.

"They paint a lot of different pictures, the Lions - they do a bit of movement and that and it's just about how we react."

Moody and Franks are joined by Brodie Retallick and Crusaders teammates Codie Taylor and Sam Whitelock in the All Blacks tight five for Saturday, as they look to halt the Lions' bustling style and fluency at the set-piece.

For Moody, it's an especially steep ascent after finding himself on the outer at Test level for much of the 2015 campaign.

But Tony Woodcock's injury at the World Cup opened a door for the former Maori All Black, who jetted into England to help the All Blacks lift the trophy.

He said he'd flicked a mental switch since that time.

"From being on the fringe and cruising a bit to switching on, making sure I stay on top of my game, doing the extras, focus on my weaknesses rather than my strengths - especially my major hurdle, my fitness," Moody said.

"Getting that box ticked - and then keeping on it."