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All Blacks' skills, set piece will challenge Lions - Rennie

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The All Blacks should have the individual skills to challenge the British and Irish Lions in the first test on Saturday and will not make as many mistakes, Waikato Chiefs coach Dave Rennie said on Tuesday. © Rob Jefferies/Getty Images The All Blacks should have the individual skills to challenge the British and Irish Lions in the first test on Saturday and will not make as many mistakes, Waikato Chiefs coach Dave Rennie said on Tuesday. The All Blacks should have the individual skills to challenge the British and Irish Lions in the first test on Saturday and will not make as many mistakes, Waikato Chiefs coach Dave Rennie said on Tuesday.

The Lions overcame successive midweek losses to the Auckland Blues and Otago Highlanders to control the game, force the Chiefs into errors and shut down their attack before they ran out 34-6 winners in Hamilton.

"They dominated up front. We battled to get our lineout going. Our scrum. And they punished us for it," Rennie said.

"(But) the All Blacks will play the way they play, they will back themselves and their skill set to challenge the Lions.

The Lions failed to impress in New Zealand as they struggled in three of their first four games but they have been brutally clinical in their last two matches if somewhat restricted and one-dimensional.

They did show some creative penetration against the Chiefs, with Liam Williams pushing his case for the first test with some incisive breaks.

The visitors, however, again failed to put away several other chances with one pass from Scotland winger Tommy Seymour to Jared Payne so poor that the New Zealand-born Ireland centre was unable to haul it in with the line open.

Commentators point to the way the All Blacks tore apart Samoa last Friday to run in 12 tries as an indication of what could be the big difference between the sides at Eden Park.

Lions coach Warren Gatland, however, said his team were still ironing out their combinations and although he was happy with the defensive side of their game, knows the All Blacks would present a massive step up.

"It takes a bit of time," he said. "We knew we were creating tries we just haven't been finishing them off.

"From a defensive point of view we're getting stronger and stronger in that area against the best attacking teams in world rugby. We're strangling them a little bit in the way that we're defending too.

"On Saturday we're up against the best team in the world in their own backyard, a place they haven't been beaten at since 1994, so we have to take things up a level."

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