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Hibbard: More to come from Lions

Richard Hibbard vowed "there is so much more to come" from the British and Irish Lions after their latest Australia tour game predictably proved a mismatch.

The Lions crushed a Combined Country XV 64-0 at Hunter Stadium without remotely threatening to hit top gear. Despite a second-half display punctuated by errors, mostly of the handling variety, they still scored 10 tries, including a double for wing George North.

Hibbard said: "Obviously he (Lions head coach Warren Gatland) is going to be a little disappointed with the second-half performance. So he should be. There is so much more to come from us. You never like to let a few tries slip, and there were concentration lapses, but we know there is a hell of a lot more to come from us."

The countdown is gathering pace towards next week's first Test against Australia in Brisbane, with Gatland's team announcement on Thursday for the New South Wales Waratahs game two days later possibly giving some key indicators.

With Tommy Bowe currently injured, it is highly feasible that Tuesday's three-quarter line - Alex Cuthbert, Brian O'Driscoll, Jamie Roberts and George North - could face the Wallabies en bloc.

Close interest will centre around Gatland's pack choice in Sydney, notably the second-row and back-row, with the latter area likely to cause most debate prior to Test selection next week.

Hibbard appears to be ahead of Tom Youngs and Rory Best in the hooking stakes, forging a front-row alongside Mako Vunipola and Adam Jones, with Alun-Wyn Jones slight favourite as Paul O'Connell's second-row partner.

But the breakaway unit - which, at the moment, is seemingly pointing to Tom Croft, skipper Sam Warburton and Jamie Heaslip - potentially has other players in the mix such as Justin Tipuric, Sean O'Brien and Toby Faletau.

"The coaches are very good at managing us. They look after us very well," Hibbard added. "It's about getting minutes on the park, getting people working together and used to each other.

"We feel we are on course to win the series. We showed tonight, 64-0 and 10 tries, and there is a hell of a lot more to come. So I am very positive. I think we can really push on. Four wins, countless tries, we keep building. I'm very confident."


From Belfast Telegraph