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About Me:18-year-old sixth form student, studying English Literature, History and Government and Politics. My articles will broadly cover topics from the current affairs of politics to reviews of books and albums, as well as adding my own creative pieces, whether it be short fiction or general opinion.
What on earth is in the food their parents feed them? To have three brothers play rugby at a high standard is one thing, but to have them all to play for the greatest team of all time, with all of them being considered one of the best, if not the best player in their position, is truly remarkable and unparalleled in history. Not only that, but word has gotten around that there exists a Barrett daughter who is dominating in the sport of netball and an even younger Blake Barrett who is slicing up the ranks at the younger years of rugby. What a stunning achievement from the family – it’s exciting to see what they will produce in the coming years. The closest thing the northern hemisphere has to such familial talent is the Vunipola brothers and their relation to Taulupe Faletau, which cannot be overlooked in their wealth of talent also.
However, such is the battlefield-like arena that the game of rugby renders a pitch of grass that blood and water are of equal thickness. And the heart shown in the final test was the perfect example of this. True, the scrum was well below par of what we would come to expect from the best of the bets of northern hemisphere rugby, but the force with which Itoje brushed aside Laumape, the tenacity of both Owen Farrell and Faleutau to secure a penalty by holding the opposition up, the grit shown by Johnny Sexton to continue playing despite being clearly injured – it all is brilliant to watch on the pitch.
But it wasn’t just the Lions who showed the heart of such, the All Blacks did too. It is all too easy to observe this team through a prism of wanting them to lose, to show the world that they are flawed, that they are human. This side to them was exposed on this tour, and, rather than making the onlooker relish in their disease it make us appreciate more the times when they were able to uphold their stoic perfection because we understand just how fragile it can be. It is for this reason as to why I felt more of a discomfort than a cheer when, in the final minutes of the game, Romain Poite decided what he had originally deemed as a penalty offence (and which, we may surmise, would have resulted in an All Black test win, as well as a test series win), but then changed it an offence worthy of just a scrum, which resulted in no points being scored. Though I may have felt sympathy initially for the All Blacks, this soon diminished when looking at the rulebook and realising that Poite had actually made the correct decision.
Thus, the series ended in a draw. In a way, the result seems, despite being disappointing, largely fitting not only in its unpredictability but also the way in which the two teams played – both were furious and, at times, heroic and have done a great service to the sport of rugby.
Image Credits: bbc.co.uk