WELLINGTON (Reuters) - The elevation of Elliot Daly and Liam Williams into the British and Irish Lions test side after strong midweek performances against the Waikato Chiefs was providing plenty of motivation for the squad, according to Robbie Henshaw.
Williams and Daly were selected for their attacking abilities, which were to the fore as the Lions scored a scintillating try by Sean O‘Brien in the 30-15 defeat to the All Blacks on Saturday.
The Lions face the Wellington Hurricanes on Tuesday, the last midweek fixture for the tourists, and coach Warren Gatland has said continually that test spots were up for grabs every week.
Henshaw, who starts at inside centre against the Hurricanes, said the entire squad knew this was their last chance to impress.
“Gats mentioned during the week that if you do perform you will get a chance,” Henshaw told reporters.
”So the onus is on us as a side to go out, put in a good performance and hopefully out our hand come the weekend.
“It just goes to show you need to be ready, put in a good performance and you will be considered I would say.”
Henshaw will partner Jonathan Joseph in the midfield against the Hurricanes, who have been boosted by the release of four All Blacks for the match, including three in the backline.
“They have plenty of experience and plenty of quality players across the board so it will be a really good test for us,” the Ireland centre said.
“In the back line, they have some sharp boys with Julian Savea, they have put in some awesome performances, scored the most tries in Super Rugby and won it last year as well.”
The Hurricanes will be hoping to also up their level as they head into a crucial clash with the Canterbury Crusaders after the international break and then the Super Rugby playoffs.
The 2016 champions have struggled against aggressive forward packs this season, losing twice to the Waikato Chiefs and once to the Crusaders, who shut down fast ball and suffocated attacking opportunities, something the Lions have been more than adept at.
”We need to take it to another level this week, we all know that we need to be better,“ Henshaw said. ”It is an attitude more so than the action.
“We had a taste of what it is like to face the All Blacks and we need to match that physicality playing against a pretty good Hurricanes side.”
Reporting by Greg Stutchbury; Editing by John O'Brien