Robbie Henshaw has defended the Lions' decision to give players a break from preparations for the defining thirs test against the All Blacks in Queenstown.

The Ireland centre suffered a tour-ending injury in the midweek game against the Hurricanes, but experienced first-hand the intensive schedule the squad have endured since arriving in New Zealand.

The squad are now in Auckland ahead of Saturday's game, but head coach Warren Gatland has come in for criticism as the Lions have engaged in bungee jumping, helicopter rides and a few drinks to help them recuperate ahead of the series-deciding game at Eden Park.

But Henshaw insists that the break from the Tour bubble has been well earned, telling 2fm's Game On Lions Rugby Preview: "Yeah, I think they needed that.

"The first two weeks after we got there we didn't get a day off. Not a single day.

"Our day off was a travel day, so you play your game on Saturday, Sunday would be your travel day and you'd have a meeting in the evening, the Monday you'd have a chance to get together for the Captain's Run.

"Then a game Tuesday, travel Wednesday, train Thursday-Friday, game Saturday.

"It was really full on. There was no switch-off time and it was originally planned that the lads would have their bit of escape from the pitch.

"From what I heard, they had a tough session yesterday."

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