Provincial Barbarians 7 - 13 British & Irish Lions: Story of the match

Taulupe Faletau looks to break a tackle against the Provinial Barbarians. Pic: AFP PHOTO / MICHAEL BRADLEYMICHAEL BRADLEY/AFP/Getty Images
Taulupe Faletau looks to break a tackle against the Provinial Barbarians. Pic: AFP PHOTO / MICHAEL BRADLEYMICHAEL BRADLEY/AFP/Getty Images
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Owen Farrell answered the misfiring British and Irish Lions’ distress call to sink the New Zealand Provincial Barbarians 13-7, as Johnny Sexton endured a wretched night in Whangarei.

Ireland fly-half Sexton trudged off after just 48 minutes of the Lions’ opening tour clash in New Zealand, removed in part due to a potential leg injury - but also after a miserable performance.

Self-employed maintenance engineer Sam Anderson-Heather’s try put the Barbarians 7-3 ahead at the break, with Farrell forced to rescue the tourists in a wholly-unconvincing victory.

TWEET OF THE MATCH

“Lions - 1st game is often forgettable and this is no different. Credit to the NZ barbarians side all comfortable on the ball.” Former England and Lions hooker Brian Moore.

MOMENT OF THE MATCH

Owen Farrell sent Ross Moriarty through the line, then got onto the ball again to set up the Lions’ winning score, which was well finished by Anthony Watson.

STAR MAN

Taulupe Faletau: The Wales flanker produced a masterful try-saving tackle in the first half. One of few to impress on a below-par night.

PART-TIMERS REIGN SUPREME

The Lions’ lacklustre showing allowed a scratch team of promising youngsters and part-time journeymen to push Warren Gatland’s men to the brink. And captain Sam Anderson-Heather claimed a try to remember - a far cry from his day job as a maintenance engineer.