British and Irish Lions coach Warren Gatland says he expects even more from his side after making three changes for Saturday’s second Test against South Africa (Match Betting – South Africa 11/10, British and Irish Lions 4/5, Draw 20/1).

The tourists (9/2 To Win By 1 – 5 Points Inclusive) came from 12-3 down at half-time to edge last Saturday’s opening match 22-17 and know another win in Cape Town will seal only the Lions’ fifth series victory over the Springboks.

Gatland’s selection for the second match hints that he expects a Bok backlash, rewarding Mako Vunipola for his strong showing off the bench in the opening match with a start at loosehead prop.

Meanwhile, behind the scrum, the experienced Conor Murray has been installed in the number nine shirt, replacing Ali Price, perhaps due to his superior kicking game, while the more physical Chris Harris replaces Elliot Daly at outside-centre.

South Africa have also made three changes to their starting XV, with props Steven Kitshoff and Frans Malherbe coming in for the injured Ox Nche and the benched Trevor Nyakane.

Jasper Wiese starts at number eight, replacing Kwagga Smith, while the hosts have opted for a six-two split on the bench, with Marco van Staden added to provide further cover in the back-row.

Bok boss Jacques Nienaber says he has selected a matchday 23 “best suited to achieve the objectives we have set for this match”, adding that he expects “fighting spirit and pride” from his troops.

Pundits and fans alike will view Nienaber’s comments as a foreshadowing of his plans to send his side out to crush the tourists in a bid to prolong the series (Series Winner – British and Irish Lions 2/7, South Africa 5/2, Draw 22/1).

Gatland expects “another tight contest” but is counting on his troops to raise their game as they aim to make their own piece of history in the Cape.

“We feel we can go up another level from where we were in the first Test and I would expect us to improve,” he said.

“It’s the biggest game on the tour and we have to embrace the expectation that comes with it. As players and coaches, these are the games you want to be involved in.

“We’re relishing the opportunity to face the Springboks again on Saturday and potentially seal a series win.”

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