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Lions issued All Blacks with a timely reminder

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    12 Jun 2017     Getty Images

The All Blacks assembled in Auckland on Sunday to prepare for their Test with Samoa at Eden Park on Friday evening.

The Lions win in Christchurch had confirmed what the All Blacks management had been saying about the visitors all along, he said.

The win had also shown the Lions had a certain style which was effective and unlikely to change too much in the Test series.

Hansen said his Lions rival Warren Gatland had a particular way he wanted to play just as every coach had a signature style they liked to play.

"Gats' style has always been, it's a physical game – big forwards and big ball carriers in the middle of the park. His game on Saturday night really showed that's where they're heading. Line speed in defence is something he's always been strong on. He's got a great defence coach in [Andy] Farrell. He definitely likes line speed so you're going to expect that.

"If you think you're going to go and have time on the ball you're kidding yourself. They'll be in our face so we need to train for that," he said.

As a result there would be an extra incentive for the All Blacks to get their house in order ahead of the series.

"It's our first week together. We've got a lot of stuff that we have to cover without over-loading them mentally with too much and it will be a reasonably unique training week because we've got a Test at the end of it against an opponent who we respect a lot. We're looking forward to playing them.

"That game will be vital for us in our preparation.

"The key thing this week is to get back into being an All Black," he said.

It was the annual battle the All Blacks faced in merging the side and eliminating the influences of the five Investec Super Rugby franchises and it was essential to create an All Blacks focus in that time available.

Enthusiasm wouldn't be an issue because the 12-yearly threat the Lions posed would see the All Blacks up for the challenge against a good side.

On the injury front Hansen said captain Kieran Read's broken thumb had healed and he should be available to lead the side in the first Test against the Lions but would not play against Samoa.

Flanker Jerome Kaino will play against Samoa after he was cleared following his knee surgery. Second five-eighths Ryan Crotty would be only 'touch-and-go' with his rib injury while fullback Ben Smith and lock Brodie Retallick were free of concussion symptoms.