Warburton is renowned for his inspirational leadership of both Wales and the Lions [Reuters].

Lions captain Sam Warburton could miss the final test against Australia after injuring his hamstring in Melbourne on Saturday 29 June.

Warburton was forced off with 13 minutes of the second test remaining, and will remain in Melbourne for a scan which could determine his participation in the decisive match of the series.

Warburton told the BBC that his hamstring was "sore", and said it was a new injury for him.

However the Cardiff Blues star, who is renowned for his inspirational leadership, insisted: "Of course I want to lead the team in the third Test and I'll do everything I can to do that."

After the match Lions coach Warren Gatland hailed Warburton's performance and said his substitution was a major hindrance to the touring side.

Gatland said: "Sam was brilliant at the breakdown, particularly in the first half, when we had a number of turnovers. I think that was the difference between the two sides.

"It was a big loss when he came off. Dan Lydiate had run himself into the ground and we probably would have brought Dan off and Tom Croft on for him.

"Unfortunately Sam has picked up that injury which has perhaps changed the momentum a bit."

If Warburton is forced out of the final test, Gatland could replace him with compatriot Justin Tipuric, a specialist in the open-side flanker position.

Tipuric was a stand-out performer for Wales during last season's Six Nations and was named man-of-the-match in his country's 30-3 victory over England in the final round.

Ireland's Sean O'Brien has played on the open-side flank several times for his country, but is more renowned for his skills on the opposite side of the scrum, as are Croft and Lydiate.

The Lions head to Sydney for next week's final test looking for their first series victory since 1997, when they beat South Africa 2-1.

The tourists won the first test 23-21, with the home side's kicker Curtley Beale missing a last-minute penalty that would have won the match for his side.

However the roles were reversed yesterday when the Lions' full-back Leigh Halfpenny missed a long-range kick in the final seconds, leaving the Wallabies winners by 16 points to 15.