Sam Warburton, the British & Irish Lions skipper, is remaining calm after the second Test victory in New Zealand and admits it will mean nothing if they do not go on to win the series.
The Wales and Cardiff Blues back row man refused to be drawn into self-congratulatory mode in Wellington in the wake of the 24-21 win over the 14 men All Blacks on Saturday.
It ended New Zealand’s run of 47 successive home wins since they lost to the Springboks in 2009 and was their first defeat in Wellington since England beat them there in 2003.
“It’s only half the job done and I will be happy when we bring the test series home. It’s one apiece now, so effectively we have only played two halves,” said Warburton ahead of the third Test in Auckland at Eden Park.
“It’s great we have got it to 1-1, but we have got to win the series. We have got an epic battle on our hands next weekend.
“I didn’t even celebrate after the final whistle, I just thought we are evens now. I will genuinely only be happy if we get that Test series win.
“Whatever happens we will come back with some credibility, but I want to get the job done and bring the series home. I hadn’t realised we hadn’t conceded a try – that is an incredible achievement.
“I’m very proud of that defensive effort. You can talk tactics as much as you like, but sometimes it’s about desire to get off line and put some hits on.
“We can’t stress how important the Lions is for players – it is the absolute pinnacle of our careers. The Test matches are really important and getting wins keeps it alive for the fans.
“It’s great that we managed to put that performance into the jersey and, hopefully, that will keep the Lions going for at least another four years.
“The one disappointing thing was the discipline. There is still much to work on because we gave away way too many penalties in the second half.
“We are delighted to have won, but we have to up it again next week to bring the series home.”
The Lions first try on Saturday was captured brilliantly by David Gibson/FOTOSPORT
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