Courtney Lawes crunches Charlie Hodgson


Tony Brown takes big hit from Pakalani


Dafydd Howells scores quickest try ever?


Carlos Spencer & Stephen Larkham fight


Two casual tryscorers shown up


Tameifuna's huge hit on Michael Hooper


Biggest punches & worst fights in France


Huge hit by Tonga in Pacific Nations Cup


George Pisi hit makes Shane Geraghty ill

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

British & Irish Lions excitement hits Pirates in Johannesburg

British & Irish Lions excitement hits Pirates in Johannesburg

The British & Irish Lions are in South Africa as they embark on the challenge of playing ten matches around the country in a short period of time. The last time the Lions toured there ended in success, which local fans are still sore about.

In 1997 the Sprinboks were World Champions, as they are now, and they fully expected to win the series with no problems whatsoever. Jeremy Guscott saw things differently though, as his winning drop goal in the second test clinched the series for the visitors.

This time around, the Lions have once again had very little time to prepare and have an immensely physical and determined opposition in front of them. Three Test matches and bruising warm up games lie in wait as this team of stars must click together asap.

From a South African point of view, Lions fever has hit the country and there is a buzz and excitement around the series, as revenge for 12 years ago is on everyones minds.

Besides being die hard supporters, as rugby fans, the country cant wait for an intriguing series that should be eventful whenever the Lions take to the field.

Pirates rugby club in Johannesburg, only a stones throw away from where RD was created (and where Ive spent many hours playing), will be one of the many drinking holes in the city where fans will get behind their team and enjoy the series.

As the excitement around the rugby world grows for this fascinating series, well try bring you random clips that give you a feel for the atmosphere and vibe that surrounds the tour.

The British & Irish Lions play their first match this Saturday, against the Royal XV side.
Check our fixtures page for further details of upcoming matches.



Time: 01:44
Note: Clip from Sky Sports

Posted at 3:59 pm | 18 comments

Viewing 18 comments

Anonymous May 27, 2009 2:58 pm

NUMBER 1!!! oh AND LIONS ARE GONA SMASH THE SPRINGBOKS!!!

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Anonymous May 27, 2009 3:08 pm

Don't want to be pedantic but I'm pretty sure Jerry Guscott's drop goal was in the 2nd test not the 3rd. The lions then lost the 3rd test but had already won the series....

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RS May 27, 2009 3:10 pm

Yes, it was in the second test. Beautifull moment.

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RD May 27, 2009 3:14 pm

^ Correct.. cheers for spotting the mistake.

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FrankyH May 27, 2009 3:16 pm

Cant wait! The first match should be a real 'warm up' though from what I understand.. not too many well known players in that side I think.

This next month or so is going to be awesome.. :)

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KP May 27, 2009 3:42 pm

Opening match will be interesting, as there'll be none of the leinster boys and murray and ellis are to be excluded as well. Should be good though. Damn shame I have an exam in the morning though! On a Saturday as well! Grrr!

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Budge Pountney May 27, 2009 5:56 pm

worlds smallest violin playing for you KP, man up! thats wha i did when i lost that testicle...

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 7:02 am

SPRINGBOKSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSS!

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Anonymous May 28, 2009 7:03 am

MAKE THE BULLS ALL BOKS!!!

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AndyMo May 28, 2009 8:23 am

Haha, is Pirates JHB anything like the Cape Town one? Dodgy. We call it the 'Ritz', where you're sure to be the best looking guy in the bar. Mostly because you've still got all your teeth.

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Kenny May 28, 2009 8:54 am

The only black guy in the vid is cooking the food.

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FrankyH May 28, 2009 10:15 am

AndyMo, never been to the one in CT, but this is a sports club that has a bar, not the other way around.. :P

Yeah Kenny, it's a different generation of fans that they interviewed. There were no doubt black guys training down on the field though.. give it time... change doesn't happen overnight for a country that's been through so much. :)

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Paul Gormley May 28, 2009 12:48 pm

Ok my predictions! bare with me!
Im a limerick man and a diehard munster supporter. While obviously Paulie was the man to captin the team, he IS the best second row in europe, handsdown. what makes him this? his determination to be the best he can be. anyone who knows about forward play in the game must surely admire him.
The key to beating the springboks is in the front 5. they have the best secondrow partnership in the world and surely paulie must be on top of his game along with jones(i reckon) to get the better of them. to do this, they need a) a good lineout thrower, and b) good lifters. this is where the lions are lacking. the injury to fla is a disaster, no point beating around the bush he was going to start at hooker. his lineouts were like BULLETS. the pace, the precision gave o connel and donnacha for munster and indeed ireland that extra protection. if you look at props, murray and jenkins are the two form props and are odds on to start, while i agree with this, i cannot believe that john hayes hasn been picked to tour. like all props the mature with old age. im not sayin hayes is a good scrummager-far from it- but they are playin a south africa team that reportedly want to recall both van der lind and botha from leinster and ulster. this means their scrum is worrying for them. i do not think hayes would have hindered the scrum. the reason i suggest hayes and he is widely regarded as the BEST one man lifter in europe. at 6"4 and 20 odd stone, being able to FLING o connell into the air would make it easier to disrupt lineout ball.
now onto the backs, the injury to tomas was a disaster, no more for o gara. the feeling around some parts of limerick for last 7/8 months or so, is that o gara hasnt been putting in the same type of performances he has done and i cannot see him being partnered by philips. also is tackling is more than suspect and surely will be targeted.
I am sure people do not agree with the above but its my opinion, but this is where it gets more creative. Hands up who knows keith Earls? people in munster and ireland surely do. but who else? this BOY has been ripping up the heineken cup and magners league all season. now people point out the leinster game in the semi which was terribly disappointing for a munster supporter. what back do you know at 20 years of age can perform well when he doesnt have the ball? he touched the ball less than 5 times such was the measure of performance of the leinster players and he made a few good breaks. you can be rest assured the people of south africa dont know the man from young munster. I would put him up against habana, it wont faze him one bit and i think he could do more damage than bowe or halfpenney.
As you know the second and third tests are being played at altitude and the legend that is rocky elsom says that the altitude does NOT affect your rugby. he says people who are not used to it, will come down with flu like syndroms. it does affext your fitness an hour into the game. this is something the lions should be wary of.
here is my team:
1.Euan murray
2.lee mears
3.gethin jenkins
4.alun-wyn jones
5.paul o Connell
6.Tom Croft
7.David Wallace
8.Jamie Heaslip
9.Mike Philips
10.Stephen Jones
11.Shane Williams
12.Jamie Roberts
13.Brian o Driscoll
14.Keith Earls
15.Lee Byrne

What do you think, i know the majority are irish and welsh but what can i say scotland and england havent done anything in years?

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Feargal May 28, 2009 1:08 pm

keith earls is not ready. he can attack as good or even better than anyone, but his defence isn't good enough for this. he was responsible for two leinster tries in the HC. i'd pick bowe: solid defence, knows how to take chances and finish team tries, even if he won't tear anyone apart no one will do it to him

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Huh!! the 3rd May 28, 2009 9:48 pm

Earls can tackle and tackle hard, plenty of evidence on the net to show it, his problem is his timing. As with Mafi he rushes to soon out of the line, unfortunately its disasterous when they do it together, but when he gets it right, he hits as hard as a flanker. Lets remember O'driscoll wasn't exactly the greatest tackler at 21 either. In 01 O'Driscoll was 22 and had a WC and 2 seasons behind him, Earls is professional less than a year.

RE: This vid, lets hope the boys aren't treated to too much free BBQs after matches. They are monsters after all.

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Anonymous May 29, 2009 11:20 am

Kenny said...
The only black guy in the vid is cooking the food.

Yeah, I know. I went to cater a football game in Soweto last week and I was the only white face..

go figure.

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Paul Gormley May 30, 2009 12:03 pm

i just think keith has the pace, the ability to beat people one on one, and the fact he has a HUGE boot on him would be my player. maybe im being a tad biased, hes nowhere experienced enough but thats what the lions is all about, players stepping up to the mark. and regarding his defence his problem is shooting up in the line, not his actual tackling. and i think that would hinder him in the centre but all you have to look at shooting up in the line as a WINGER benefits munster with ian dowling, it cuts off the ball to the wings, if you rush up on a diaginal on the centres as they risk bein intercepted. if you can cut off habana or peterson, very good chance indeed! now im going out on a limb here as the first match kicks off in an hour or so and wel see how keith plays.

so hit me what you think fergal an co!
hahaha

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Paul Gormley May 30, 2009 3:04 pm

i take back everything i said about earls making the test team!
He never recovered from an awful start and well to be frank he looked out of place.
lee byrne was the only person who really stepped up to the mark, while roberts, bowe and o gara were fairly handy, so too was martyn williams.
id like to point out the amount of times o connell who had an average game by his standards called himself in the lineouts. when the pressure was on (and it was really on in what was a SHOCKING first half) he did lead well.
much more has to be expected if they are to stand any chance of winning the series. although i am very excited at the thought of o driscoll and byrne playing together.

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