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Can the Wallabies win the second Lions test?

Wallabies vs Lions preview

The second test will see the Lions hosted in Melbourne to try and seal the series against the Wallabies, who have to win the fixture in order to stand a chance at redemption.

The Wallabies second test against the British and Irish Lions will be a do-or-die affair, as the Australians have to secure a win in order to keep the series-winning hope alive.

Robbie Deans has made a number of changes to the side which started last week, replacing many injuries which occurred and rewarding those who played well off the bench.

The tragic hero of the first test, Kurtley Beale, gets a start at fullback, and rightfully so, after the 24-year old make a scintillating break last week and had some great moments with ball in-hand.

Christian Lealiifano will once again start at centre and get a real chance to show what he can do, following an early departure from the field in the first test after being injured in the first minute.

Joe Tomane comes onto the wing in place of Digby Ioane, who also endured an injury last week, while Mogg, Horne and Phipps take their place on the bench.

James O’Connor will once again be at the playmaking helm, despite the 22-year old being criticised for his kicking performance in the first test.

The Lions have made five changes to the side that won in Brisbane.

Ben Youngs will start at scrumhalf in place of Mike Phillips, while Dan Lydiate moves onto the flank in place of Tom Croft.

Irish speedster Tommy Bowe gets the nod to start on the wing in place of Alex Cuthbert, one of the try-scorers from the first test.

Second row Geoff Parling replaces Paul O’Connell, and Makovina Vunipola takes over Alex Corbisiero. Both O’Connell and Corbisiero endured injuries from the first game.

On the bench there are five changes with Ryan Grant, Sean O’Brien, Conor Murray, Tom Croft and Alex Cuthbert earning spots alongside Richard Hibbard, Dan Cole and Owen Farrell.

Rugby Informer’s take: the Lions have the first win in the bag, but it won’t offer them too much confidence, as the Wallabies had a number of opportunities to win the opening match, despite losing many players. The Lions will definitely be better prepared, but the Wallabies should have a better strategy to counter the Lions’ structured approach. Wallabies by 5.

Wallabies – 15 Kurtley Beale, 14 Israel Folau, 13 Adam Ashley-Cooper, 12 Christian Lealiifano, 11 Joe Tomane, 10 James O’Connor, 9 Will Genia, 8 Wycliff Palu, 7 Michael Hooper, 6 Ben Mowen, 5 Kane Douglas, 4 James Horwill (c), 3 Ben Alexander, 2 Stephen Moore, 1 Benn Robinson.
Subs: 16 Saia Fainga’a, 17 James Slipper, 18 Sekope Kepu, 19 Rob Simmons, 20 Liam Gill, 21 Nick Phipps, 22 Rob Horne, 23 Jesse Mogg.

British & Irish Lions – 15 Leigh Halfpenny, 14 Tommy Bowe, 13 Brian O’Driscoll, 12 Jonathan Davies, 11 George North, 10 Jonny Sexton, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Jamie Heaslip, 7 Sam Warburton (c), 6 Dan Lydiate, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Alun Wyn Jones, 3 Adam Jones, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Mako Vunipola.
Subs: 16 Richard Hibbard, 17 Ryan Grant, 18 Dan Cole, 19 Tom Croft, 20 Sean O’Brien, 21 Conor Murray, 22 Owen Farrell, 23 Alex Cuthbert.

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