Lions Captain Warren Whiteley, in looking ahead to this weekend’s Super Rugby final has acknowledged not only the quality of their opponents, but the magnitude of the occasion and its location.
Upon landing in New Zealand, the eighthman had the following to say “Christchurch, what a wonderful place to play, It’s rugby-man country . . . traditionally, one of the greatest places to play.”
Whiteley’s recognition of the occasion and the city’s history lends one to think that Lions, mentally, are in the right space.
He went on to say, “No one’s giving us a chance and that’s just because of the quality of the Crusaders.
They’re just a fantastic side. But we know, by being in a final, you’re giving yourself a chance. We’ll give it our best shot.
“It’s a game of rugby and anything can happen.”
Physically, through thorough planning, the Lions do look set to give Saturday their best shot as they have changed their sleep patterns in order to combat jet lag and will only train once this week as coach Swys De Bruin expressed that “less is more” in the build up to the final.
While Whiteley has acknowledge the Crusaders as a “phenomenal team” lauding their discipline and overall play, the Lions, in their third consecutive Super Rugby final, have put in the structures and work to be as best prepared as possible come Saturday.