Gatland questions officials after Henderson yellow


Warren Gatland criticised the officials after a yellow card shown to Iain Henderson contributed to the British and Irish Lions throwing away a strong lead to draw 31-31 with the Hurricanes on Tuesday.

After defeat in the first Test against New Zealand, there were plenty of positives in the opening 60 minutes in Wellington as the Lions ran in three tries and saw Dan Biggar kick well from the tee.

However, just after the hour they were reduced to 14 men as the match officials deemed a tackle from the impressive Henderson on Jordie Barrett to be dangerous.

While Henderson spent his 10 minutes in the sin bin, the Canes surged back and levelled things up thanks to Wes Goosen and Vaea Fifita.

For Gatland, the decision to send the second row to the bin was the wrong one, the Lions coach believing a penalty should have been given to his side before the incident.

"There was some good rugby played by both sides, we felt that we played some good rugby," he told Sky Sports.

"But that yellow card was going to be a penalty to us.

"It ends up being reversed, and Henderson [is] off the field for 10 minutes and [we concede] 14 points. To me, that is the game in a nutshell.

"It was the big turning moment of the game."

Henderson's performance aside from the yellow card was encouraging, though, as he made breaks, showed good hands to set up George North and tackled well.

And Gatland was impressed, although he felt the forward should have converted his opening to score in the second half.

He added: "Henderson carried really well for us. 

"We thought he had got over from short range - that's nine times we have been held up on or over the line on this tour and not been awarded a try. That's been frustrating.

"[But] he carried exceptionally well. Really, really well and got in behind them."