James Horwill cleared to play deciding test

16:42, Jul 02 2013
British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Ireland lock Paul O'Connell, who led the Lions to South Africa in 2009, feels the Hong Kong heat as the touring side take on the Barbarians.
British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Takudzwa Ngwenya of the Barbarians is tackled by the Lions' Welsh duo of Jamie Roberts and Adam Jones, right.
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Wales halfback Mike Phillips dives over to score for the Lions against the Barbarians.
British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Ireland and Lions first-five Johnny Sexton lines up a shot at goal against the Barbarians.
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British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
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British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
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British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Celtic cousins: An Irish fan and a Welsh fan unite to support the Lions.
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Lions tour captain Sam Warburton takes in the atmosphere in Perth. He is yet to start a game because of injury.
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Irish legend Brian O'Driscoll leads out the Lions to face the Western Force.
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Lions and England prop Mako Vunipola charges at the Force defence.
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British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Powerful Irish flanker Sean O'Brien tries to use some fancy footwork to get the ball past the Force's Corey Brown.
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Wales fullback Leigh Halfpenny landed 100 per cent of his attempts at goal for the Lions against the Force.
British and Irish Lions Tour 2013
Lions coach Warren Gatland looks very pleased after his side comfortably beats the Western Force in Perth.
Ben Youngs and Owen Farrell
Ben Youngs (left) is congratulated by Owen Farrell after his second half try against Queensland.
Tommy Bowe
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Richie Gray
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George North
Lions wing George North fends off a Queensland Reds player.
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Lions first-five Owen Farrell takes a penalty kick at goal.
Ben Tapuai
Queensland's Ben Tapuai is tackled high by a Lions player.
Sam Warburton
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Sean O'Brien
Lions forward Sean O'Brien dives over to score in the corner, one of 10 tries in the 64-0 rout.
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Sean Maitland skips away from the tackle of a Country Combined defender.
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Lions captain Brian O'Driscoll is upended in a tackle in Newcastle.
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Brian O'Driscoll slides over to score against Country Combined.
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Jamie Heaslip of the Lions charges upfield during the match between the NSW Waratahs and the British & Irish Lions.
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Rob Kearney of the Lions breaks with the ball during the match between the NSW Waratahs and the British & Irish Lions.
Lions v Waratahs
Jamie Roberts of the Lions is tackled by John Ulugia during the match between the NSW Waratahs and the British & Irish Lions.
Lions v Waratahs
Simon Zebo of the Lions is tackled by Bernard Foley (L) and John Ulugia during the match between the NSW Waratahs and the British & Irish Lions.
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British & Irish Lions wing Christian Wade leaps for a high-ball against the Brumbies' Ian Prior during their tour match at Canberra Stadium.
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Match captain Rory Best lead the dejected British & Irish Lions off the field.
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Clyde Rathbone
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George North
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George North
Israel Folau denies George North a try in the corner.
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Israel Folau dives over to score one of his two tries in the first half.
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A trio of Irish Lions fans at Suncorp Stadium.
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A fired-up Lions fan celebrates the first test victory.
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Wallabies halfback Will Genia is hit by Jamie Heaslip as he attempts to kick.
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Kiwi-born Scottish international Sean Maitland goes over for one of the British & Irish Lions five tries in their 35-0 rout of the Melbourne Rebels.
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Simon Zebo finds space against the Melbourne Rebels.
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Five Lions fans spell out their support in Melbourne.
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Wallabies fullback Adam Ashley-Cooper celebrates his match-winning try late in the second test.
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Lions wing George North lifts Israel Folau off the ground in the tackle.
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Leigh Halfpenny successfully kicks a penalty in the second half.
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Leigh Halfpenny is consoled by Jonathan Sexton (left) and Sean Maitland after his extra-time penalty to win fell short.
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Wallabies players James Horwill and Benn Robinson celebrate as Leigh Halfpenny's kick misses.
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Lions captain Sam Warburton is helped from the field during the second test.
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Lions prop Mako Vunipola charges through the Wallabies' defence.
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Alun Wyn Jones
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Lions wing George North evades two Wallabies players.
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Lions fans at Etihad Stadium before the second test.
Lions fans
Lions fans at Etihad Stadium before the second test.
Jonathan Sexton, Jamie Roberts, Conor Murray
Jamie Roberts (centre) and Conor Murray congratulate Jonathan Sexton on his second half try.
Alex Corbisiero
Lions prop Alex Corbisiero squeezes over for the first try of the deciding test.
Lions celebrate
Lions players and staff celebrate their third test and series victory in Sydney.
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Lions and Wallabies players show contrasting emotions at the final whistle.
Jamie Roberts
Centre Jamie Roberts dives over for a second half try that sealed the Lions' victory.
James O'Connor
Justin Tipuric is fended off by Wallabies first-five James O'Connor.
Dan Lydiate
Lions lock Dan Lydiate rises high to take the ball from a lineout.
Jamie Roberts
Centre Jamie Roberts sprints away from the chasing Wallabies defence.
Jonathan Sexton
Jonathan Sexton celebrates the series victory with Lions fans in the stands.
Brian O'Driscoll
Brian O'Driscoll, dropped for the third test, celebrates the team's victory.
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Lions fans pay tribute to former captain Brian O'Driscoll.
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Injured captain Sam Warburton holds the series trophy after victory at ANZ Stadium.

A vindicated James Horwill has voiced his relief and excitement after the Wallabies captain was cleared to play in Saturday night's series decider against the British and Irish Lions.

Horwill found out at 10am (local time) on Tuesday during a weights session in preparation for the third test at Sydney's ANZ Stadium that Canadian Graeme Mew had declined to uphold an IRB appeal.

The 37-cap second-rower had been cleared of a first test rucking charge nine days ago in Melbourne but was made to face the music again after the IRB appealed his not guilty verdict.

But after over 12 hours of deliberating, following a two-and-a-half hour hearing on Monday night, Mew supported the original decision in a massive boost for Australia's hopes of retaining the Tom Richards Cup.

"It's huge," Horwill said. "I love what I do and it means a hell of a lot to me to represent my country and not only to represent it but to lead it in what is arguably the biggest game in this country since the Rugby World Cup final in 2003.

"I'm excited at that opportunity and now we can focus on the game, which is important.

"I feel very vindicated by the way it's gone."

There had been major criticism of the IRB's move to launch an appeal last Thursday but Horwill was loathe to take aim.

"The process is what it is but I have to say it was a very fair process both times," he said. "The hearings were very fair."

Despite failing to get any sleep on Monday night, Horwill denied he'd be negatively affected either mentally or physically for the decider.

Horwill was originally exonerated by New Zealand judicial officer Nigel Hampton last Sunday night after being cited for stamping on rival lock Alun Wyn Jones in the opening 23-21 loss at Suncorp Stadium.

Mew noted he would have had to establish there was a misapprehension of law by (Hampton) or manifestly unreasonable decision for the appeal to succeed.

"There was sufficient evidence upon which a reasonable judicial officer could have reached the decision that was made," Mew said.

"Accordingly, it could not be said that (he) was manifestly wrong or that the interests of justice otherwise required his decision be overturned."

Mew also stated the IRB appeal had been properly taken as part of its responsibilities to protect the image of the game and ensure player welfare.

The sport's governing body said it supported Mew's decision.

"The protection of players from foul play, intentional or otherwise, is vital in upholding the values and image of rugby and to send a clear message to all levels of the game that such acts are unacceptable," the IRB said in a statement.

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James Horwill
SERIAL STAMPER: James Horwill's first test incident was not the first time the Wallabies captain has been called out for stamping.

AAP