Liam Napier looks at three things we learned from the Lions win over the All Blacks last night:
Best to tackle with the arms
Regardless of whether you believe Sonny Bill Williams should have copped a red or yellow, no-one can argue his tackle was reckless and avoidable. Williams' intent was not to slam his shoulder into Anthony Watson's head. But he did. And with it he immediately put his team under extreme and unnecessary pressure. There were contributing factors but, ultimately, that act cost the All Blacks this test.
Williams is a strong character, one used to polarising the public. Before you come off the long run it is worth remembering his quality performance in the first test; the way he punched onto the ball and offloaded. He never got a chance to test out the Jonathan Sexton-Owen Farrell axis, and now the judiciary will decide if he gets another chance on Saturday. One good test. One bad. Maybe one more chance in this series to prove his abilities.
All Blacks gracious in defeat
There were countless excuses, and cause for complaint. Not least the final match-deciding penalty against Charlie Faumuina for tackling follow prop Kyle Sinckler after he jumped to catch a pass. All Blacks coach Steve Hansen could have pointed to how disruptive losing Williams was. How his men were out on their feet after playing for 55 minutes with one less man. Hansen could have taken aim at some of the Lions' off-the-ball cheap shots (see Mako Vunipola). There were even suggestions of a war of words as the teams left the field. Hansen chose to ignore all that; to bite his tongue and display class to say the Lions deserved to win. Behind closed doors, though, expect Hansen to deliver a few rockets this week. The All Blacks hate losing. Hate it with a passion.
Nothing is a given in sport
Records are made to be broken. After what transpired at Eden Park in the first test, few gave the Lions a genuine chance of causing an upset in Wellington. Even the most loyal Lions fans were hoping their team would keep it close. Yet here we are digesting the All Blacks first loss at home for 2,849 days, and the first time they were held tryless since the 12-12 draw in Sydney in 2014. Need we mention the Eden Park record - the one where the All Blacks last lost there in 1994...