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Watch: Lions fullback Ruben Love hits magic line for try against Otago

By Sam Smith
(Source/Sky Sport NZ)

Young Wellington Lions fullback Ruben Love was on fire in the first half against Otago in the latest round of the NPC, breaking open the defence with succinct line running at Sky Stadium.

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Love burst into the game in the 11th minute from a lineout strike play, he took a short ball from centre Billy Proctor and exploded through the Otago defence from just outside the 22.

With only halfback James Arscott to beat, Love went around the outside to score his try comfortably in the left hand corner.

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His precise line running was on show again just minutes later as the Wellington backs pressed Otago’s try line.

Playing with extra depth, the Lions’ fullback hit a beautiful ball from wing Pepesana Patafilo and almost scored his second after weaving through three defenders.

He placed the ball back into the field of play and halfback TJ Perenara dived over from close range to put the Lions up 19-0.

Another try to prop Xavier Numia put the home side up 26-14 at the break which proved too much to overcome for the Southerners.

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Two penalty goals to first five Aidan Morgan continued to build the Lions lead before a late comeback threatened to steal the game.

Wellington held on for a 32-26 win, lifting them to third in the conference with five wins and two losses, just one competition behind leaders Waikato.

Love’s explosive running has been a highlight for the Lions this season, the 21-year-old has taken his game to a new level since debuting for the Hurricanes two years ago in Super Rugby Aotearoa and recently showed his potential for the Maori All Blacks against Ireland.

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Sam 651 days ago

He's talented this guy. He'd be a good pick up for the Highlanders who desperately need a 10, which I think is his better position. Him and Fakatava could form an exciting attacking partnership down there under the roof.

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Jon 31 minutes ago
Buoyant England travel to New Zealand full of hope but are they walking into an All Blacks ambush?

> New head coach Scott Robertson has kept only forwards coach Jason Ryan and conditioning coach Nic Gill from the previous regime *and so there is little institutional knowledge inherent in the new team.* Shows you what the English know about sport. Isn’t just fantastic that the best rugby team, or brand, on the planet has three brothers playing together? One a bull, the other a dancer, and last a .. boxer? Looks like a boxer bless him. > But Robertson has been working to fix that issue, with senior players and coaches having been regularly meeting to work out how they will operate together both on and off the field to ensure there is strong decision-making and a deep understanding of how the team wants to play. Have they? I would suggest then it is not a case of fixing things, that is not what Razor does. Razor will evolve the relationship between player and coach into a more symbiotic relationship. This wont be a coach that shouts down at his players theyre not doing good enough. I can imagine one of the first key areas he will be implementing is the respective leadership for each coaching group. Tight five, Loosies, Halves, Centers, and Back Three, will each have their own leadership team and an agile approach to the playing group relaying what they believe is happening on the training paddock, and in games. It will be a very big step to get everyone involved, able, and thinking about contributing to that process, but I believe a very beneficial one if successful. > England may have their best chance to win in 21 years, but they may also be walking into an ambush – *about to be hit* by a young, gifted, supremely physical and athletic All Blacks team coached by a man who has made every post a winner so far in his career and has this uncanny knack of getting the best out of people. Or, by a group hurting from not getting over the line and proving to everyone they are the best in the world, full of experience and cohesion, grit and motivation. You only need to look at someone like Patrick Tuipulotu to see someone with a fire under his belly from missing out on the last RWC due to injury, and having lost to this opposition in the previous one. It will be very interesting to see how this ‘Razor’ plays it. Does he stick with the traditional and protect the time honored All Black values of commitment, or does he evolve and pick the best players to win the Rugby Championship - and by association this test series - like Akira Ioane?

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FEATURE Buoyant England travel to New Zealand full of hope but are they walking into an All Blacks ambush? Buoyant England travel to New Zealand full of hope but are they walking into an All Blacks ambush?
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