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Criticism of Gatland is 'disgrace' - Howley.

Byline: ANDREW BALDOCK

ROB HOWLEY has branded New Zealand media criticism of British and Irish Lions boss Warren Gatland as "an absolute disgrace."

Lions assistant Howley also said he has "got no doubt" that New Zealander Gatland is a future All Blacks head coach ahead of today's Test series decider in Auckland.

Gatland was portrayed as a cartoon clown in the New Zealand Herald newspaper between the first and second Tests, but he will have the last laugh if the Lions win at Eden Park.

| Rob Howley The Lions have not won a Test series against New Zealand since 1971, while the All Blacks last suffered successive home defeats 19 years ago.

"The way Warren Gatland's been treated, absolutely, it has been a disgrace, hasn't it? It's an absolute disgrace," Howley said.

"We all love sport and rugby.

"You can be critical of technical or tactical elements of the Lions or New Zealand, but when that becomes personal criticism I think it is stepping over the mark, and that has happened over the last four weeks of the tour."

FULL STORY PLUS MATCH PREVIEW: PAGES 46,47

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Title Annotation:Sport
Publication:Daily Post (Conwy, Wales)
Geographic Code:8NEWZ
Date:Jul 8, 2017
Words:187
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