Warren Gatland makes three changes to the Lions for second Test

British & Irish Lions head coach Warren Gatland has made three tactical changes ahead of this week’s second Test against South Africa.

Gatland is first to show his hand over Springboks counterpart Jacques Nienaber in the lead-up to the match in Cape Town, with the Lions taking the first Test 22-17 on Saturday.

Conor Murray, Chris Harris and Mako Vunipola all come into the team in place of Ali Price, Elliot Daly and Rory Sutherland.

Test debutant Price drops out of the starting line-up in favour of Murray, veteran of six Lions Tests.

The defensive effiency of Harris is preferred to the big-booted Elliot Daly, with Robbie Henshaw retained at inside centre.

And Vunipola’s starring cameo against Frans Malherbe in the scrum after both were introduced in the second half, has proved enough for the Saracens loosehead to start ahead of Rory Sutherland.

The only other change concerns the bench, where Taulupe Faletau replaces Hamish Watson.

“As always, selection was incredibly tough,” said Gatland. “However, we’ve made the changes we think are the right calls for the weekend’s game.

“It’ll be another tight contest. We know the Springboks will be hurting and they’ll throw everything at us on Saturday, but I think there’s plenty more to come from us too. We feel we can go up another level from where we were in the first Test and I would expect us to improve.

“It’s the biggest game on the Tour and we have to embrace the expectation that comes with it. As players and coaches, these are the games you want to be involved in. We’re relishing the opportunity to face the Springboks again on Saturday and potentially seal a Series win.”

British & Irish Lions: 15 Stuart Hogg, 14 Anthony Watson, 13 Chris Harris, 12 Robbie Henshaw, 11 Duhan van der Merwe, 10 Dan Biggar, 9 Conor Murray; 1 Mako Vunipola, 2 Luke Cowan-Dickie, 3 Tadhg Furlong, 4 Maro Itoje, 5 Alun Wyn Jones (capt), 6 Courtney Lawes, 7 Tom Curry, 8 Jack Conan.

Replacements: 16 Ken Owens, 17 Rory Sutherland, 18 Kyle Sinckler, 19 Tadhg Beirne, 20 Taulupe Faletau, 21 Ali Price, 22 Owen Farrell, 23 Elliot Daly.

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