A look at some of the winners and losers of Warren Gatland’s 37-man British and Irish Lions squad that will tour South Africa.
Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber and director of rugby Rassie Erasmus are set to assemble the squad for the first time since winning the 2019 Rugby World Cup as South Africa readies for two Tests against Georgia in preparation for the British & Irish Lions series.
Betway has the Lions as odds-on favourites to win the series which begins with the first Test on 24 July. Although the Lions are a composite team drawn from England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales every four years, the players from each of those nations do have the advantage of having contested two Six Nations championships since the showpiece event in Japan.
Springbok players based in Ireland, the United Kingdom and France will gather together as separate groups, and virtual meetings will be organised for those based in Japan. While speaking to the press, Erasmus stressed the importance of getting everyone aligned soon.
Nienaber and the coaching staff have remained in constant contact with the squad since the World Cup, monitoring their injury recovery, performances and general well-being.
In March, the Lions organizers rejected a contingency plan to host matches in Ireland and England.
Warren Gatland named a 37-man Lions squad on 13 May, here’s a look at the winners and losers as you get ready for rugby betting with Betway:
Winners: Rory Sutherland and Mako Vunipola
Losers: Ellis Genge, Joe Marler, and Cian Healy
Winner: Zander Fagerson
Losers: Tomas Francis and Kyle Sinckler
Winners: Luke Cowan-Dickie and Jamie George
Losers: George Turner, Rob Herring, and Ronan Kelleher
Winners: Courtney Lawes and Jonny Hill
Losers: Jonny Gray, James Ryan, and Joe Launchbury
Winners: Jack Conan, Sam Simmonds, and Hamish Watson
Losers: Sam Underhill, CJ Stander, Josh Navidi and Billy Vunipola
The World’s Greatest Tour
During the epic eight-match tour, the Lions will battle the reigning world champions in five matches that lead up to the three-Test series, each hosted by one of four stadiums in Cape Town, Pretoria and Johannesburg. The Lions tour one of the three southern hemisphere giants every four years, and the 2021 edition of this great tradition is sure to offer up a reel of memorable highlights as the tourists attempt to follow up a drawn 2017 series in New Zealand with their first series victory in South Africa since 1997.
Here is the full schedule:
- Saturday 3 July: Emirates Lions v The British & Irish Lions (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)
- Wednesday 7 July: Cell C Sharks v The British & Irish Lions (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg) KO 20h00 (SAT) / 19h00 (BST)
- Saturday 10 July: Vodacom Bulls v The British & Irish Lions (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)
- Wednesday 14 July: South Africa ‘A’ v The British & Irish Lions (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 20h00 (SAT) / 19h00 (BST)
- Saturday 17 July: DHL Stormers v The British & Irish Lions (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)
- Saturday 24 July: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (1st Test, Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)
- Saturday 31 July: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (2nd Test, FNB Stadium, Johannesburg) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)
- Saturday 7 Aug: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (3rd Test, FNB Stadium, Johannesburg) KO 18h00 (SAT) / 17h00 (BST)