Lions tour: Round table - Who wins the series-deciding third Test between the All Blacks and British and Irish Lions?

  • 07/07/2017
The Lions face the Haka in the second Test in Wellington.
The Lions face the Haka in the second Test in Wellington. Photo credit: Getty Images

The All Blacks and the British and Irish Lions will engage in a Test match for the ages on Saturday night and not too many pundits thought it would be that way.

The 24-21 win for the tourists in Wellington leaves us at the tipping point of either an expected All Blacks series win or a historic victory for the North that would go down as the greatest in Lions history.

So who's hoping to win? This week on round table we asked a few people around the Newshub office what they think the outcome might be.

Ross Karl, Newshub rugby reporter

All Blacks 24 - 19

I was tempted to pick the Lions. It's going to rain and the All Blacks never really looked like constructing a try in the wet in Wellington, even if they were down a man.

However, it is Eden Park and it is a decider. When it comes to the big games, the All Blacks deliver. Based on that alone, I think two tries to one and a few penalties thrown in for each side.

Sam Ackerman, general head of Newshub sport

All Blacks 25 - 13

I can't possibly predict any other result at Eden Park where they don't lose, and the concept of the All Blacks losing two in a row at home right now is inconceivable. The Lions are worthy foes, but I'm picking the All Blacks to kick clear and Jordie Barrett to announce himself to a global audience.

Matt Tewhatu, Newshub digital producer

All Blacks 42 - 12

The All Blacks will be hurting from the loss in Wellington. The last time they were beaten twice in a row were the two matches before the 2011 Rugby World Cup. We know what's happened since then.

Sam Warburton will lead the British and Irish Lions in the third Test.
Sam Warburton will lead the British and Irish Lions in the third Test. Photo credit: Getty Images

Mike McRoberts, Newshub presenter

All Blacks 36 - 16

I think much like Ireland experienced last year - an All Black team that has been beaten the week before is one scary proposition.

Expect the AB's to unleash their full fury at Eden Park on Saturday, skill and speed too good for the Lions. The All Blacks by 20.

John Day, RadioLIVE rugby reporter

All Blacks 29 -16

The All Blacks pack will do a demolition job on the Lions with Kieran Read leading the way, allowing the backline to finally click, running in three tries to one in a comfortable victory.

Tom Bartlett, Newshub sports producer

All Blacks 33 - 10

It will be close for 60 minutes but just when we're getting into squeaky bum territory, the Barrett brothers will conjure something up and the Lions will be left pondering what if.

Jordie Barrett will start at fullback in the deciding Test.
Jordie Barrett will start at fullback in the deciding Test. Photo credit: Getty Images

Andrew Goudie, Newshub sports presenter

All Blacks 21 - 16

I'm expecting a really tight game. The All Blacks will be without a number of first-choice players, especially in the backline, so I don't expect them to be at their best. But barring a repeat of the game-changing red card we saw in Wellington, I can't see them being beaten at Eden Park. A late try to separate the sides in the last 10 minutes. 

Henry Rounce, RadioLIVE sports reporter

All Blacks 28 - 16

Forget the weather, this is an All Blacks team that doesn't lose two games in a row, and a side that will come out firing after the loss in Wellington.

Sure it's an inexperienced backline, but there's enough punch and class for them to break through the Lions defence. Expect Retallick, Kaino and Read to front up in the forwards, while Beauden Barrett's due for a standout performance.

Kirstie Stanway, Newshub sport reporter

All Blacks 30 - 17

One-all heading into a series decider - make that a series that only comes around every 12 years, yep there is no doubt the entire team will be fired up for this one. We've heard rumours that there may have been a few scuffles in camp, that shows just how much is on the line.