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Aussie slip leaves Lions triumphant

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The British Lions got off to a winning start in the first Test against Australia in Brisbane, but by the narrowest of margins. The Lions held on for a 23-21 victory but twice in the late stages the Australians squandered opportunities to score a winning penalty.

One miss had an element of farce about it as Kurtley Beale slipped as he shaped to kick the decisive three points and skewed the ball low and wide of the posts. The Lions had to consider themselves fortunate to hold onto the win, although they had seemed well on top at 20-12 midway through the second half.

George North had scored a brilliant try for the Lions in the first half and Alex Cuthbert added another in the second. Israel Folau scored two tries for Australia, demonstrating that the teams were finely matched. Lions coach Warren Gatland chose to make replacements after 50 minutes and that seemed to shake the Lions' control, allowing the Australians back into the match.

"That was entertaining, that's for sure," Lions captain Sam Warburton said. "It was too close for comfort and the last 20 minutes were really hard. You have to give it to Australia, they went all the way and we'll expect a lot more in the next two Test matches. It's half a job done."

He feared the worst when Beale lined up that late penalty. "It's out of your control when there's a kick to the other team in the last minute," Warburton said. "There's massive delight to get the first win and get some momentum, and to get the ball rolling. We'll look forward to next week now."

The Wallabies have injury problems ahead of the second Test, with Christian Leali'ifano, Pat McCabe, Adam Ashley-Cooper and Berrick Barnes all suffering knocks that may rule them out of selection.

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