CAPE TOWN – The British and Irish Lions suffered a first loss on tour when they went down 17-13 to South Africa A in a full-blooded contest at Cape Town Stadium on Wednesday.
Trailing by 14 points at half-time, the tourists scored 10 unanswered points in the second half, but a Zander Fagerson knock-on in the final minute cost them a chance to snatch victory.
A Springbok-packed South Africa A side won despite being temporarily reduced to 13 men just before half-time when scrum-half Faf de Klerk and flanker Marco van Staden were sin-binned.
Before the kick-off, Lions captain and scrum-half Conor Murray called the fourth match of the Lions tour a “fourth Test” given the strength of the South Africa squad.
His assessment was spot on as the Lions, who had earlier scored 27 tries in three runaway victories over weak franchise sides, suddenly came up against strong opposition.
The Lions should have little difficulty overcoming another franchise, the Stormers, in Cape Town on…