Do Not Sell My Personal Information
ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump RugbyDump
Tuesday Mar 23, 2021

Lions tour likely to stay with original hosts as time for decision is running out

Lions tour likely to stay with original hosts as time for decision is running out

The Lions’ summer tour to South Africa is now likely to take place as originally scheduled after Rugby Football Union chief executive Bill Sweeney insisted discussions with the hosts are at an advanced stage. *Jason Leonard has also confirmed that they are aiming to stage it in South Africa as planned. 

ADVERTISEMENT

Sweeney revealed that the preferred contingency plan of staging the tour in the UK appears increasingly unviable.

“We’re running out of time for a UK option, frankly. The days are ticking by,” Sweeney said.

“The preferred position has always been to go to South Africa and play in South Africa, either with crowds or behind closed doors.

“We’re in a critical dialogue to confirm what they’re capable of doing around the Lions going to South Africa.”

The Lions board turned down an offer from Australia to stage the tour earlier this month.

Sweeney added: “The Lions board has been meeting pretty much weekly for some time now.

ADVERTISEMENT

“It’s not completely finalised yet. There was a possible Australian option which has gone away.”

Sweeney indicated that if South Africa are unable to host the Lions tour then it will be cancelled.

The originally proposed fixtures are as follows:

SAT 3 July: British & Irish Lions v DHL Stormers – Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
WED 7 July: British & Irish Lions v South Africa Invitational – Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth
SAT 10 July: British & Irish Lions v Cell C Sharks – Jonsson Kings Park, Durban
WED 14 July: British & Irish Lions v South Africa ‘A’ – Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit
SAT 17 July: British & Irish Lions v Vodacom Bulls – Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
SAT 24 July (1st Test): Springboks v British & Irish Lions – FNB Stadium, Johannesburg
SAT 31 July (2nd Test): Springboks v British & Irish Lions – Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town
SAT 7 August (3rd Test): Springboks v British & Irish Lions – Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg

*UPDATED

Lions chairman Jason Leonard said in a statement:

ADVERTISEMENT

“After reviewing information relating to the various contingency scenarios being considered, I can confirm that the board’s intended position is for the tour to go ahead as scheduled in South Africa in 2021.

“We acknowledge that there is a significant amount of work still to be undertaken to deliver a robust Covid-19 countermeasure plan to ensure a successful, safe and uninterrupted tour.

“SA Rugby will have our full support to help implement this plan.”

There is still uncertainty about whether crowds will be permitted to attend matches.

President of SA Rugby Mark Alexander said: “We appreciate the Lions’ faith and share their desire to see a safe and successful tour.

“We have been in regular contact with our government to make that a reality against the backdrop of the pandemic and its predicted progression over the coming months.

“There are serious financial implications for SA Rugby should the event take place without any supporters in attendance, and we cannot ignore that in our considerations.

“But we are determined that the eventual outcome will deliver the best occasion and experience for players, supporters and our commercial partners.”

RELATED VIEWING: 

Related Articles

  • 4 WEEKS AGO

    Wales hooker responds to Galthié claims...

  • 4 WEEKS AGO

    Genge avoids citing for Sexton altercation,...

  • 5 WEEKS AGO

    Peter O’Mahony returns from ban but vows...



ADVERTISEMENT

Great Tries

  • 11 HOURS AGO

    Wallabies legend Ashley-Cooper shows class in MLR with cheeky shoulder pass

  • 13 HOURS AGO

    WATCH: Hogg collects his own 60-metre spiral kick to score amazing solo try

  • 1 DAY AGO

    WATCH: The VERY BEST tries ever scored at Murrayfield in one awesome video

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: Beauden Barrett scores 25 points in 20 minutes for Suntory in Japan Top League

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: The Victor Vito offload fans have been raving about in Champions Cup quarter-final

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Aaron Smith's captain's referral turned down after swinging arm collision

  • 6 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: 19-year-old is barely a speed bump for fearsome Fijian number eight

  • 6 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: South African sevens icon Afrika done for clear cheating on Robshaw MLR debut

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Powerhouse Tongan Thor leaves opposition on his arse with HUGE handoff

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Amazing highlights reel demonstrates why Tadhg Furlong MUST go on the British & Irish Lions tour this Summer

View All

See It To Believe It

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    The most iconic pieces of rugby commentary in brilliant 7-minute montage

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    'It's part of our culture' says Haka performing South African university team

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    Petrus du Plessis video of son's dominant scrum shows signs of potential future star

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    Over $450 million loss for South Africa's economy if the Lions tour happens without fans

  • 6 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: South African sevens icon Afrika done for clear cheating on Robshaw MLR debut

View All

Funnies

  • 10 HOURS AGO

    WATCH: Comedy gold as close range 'falcon' gifts Brumbies try in Super Rugby AU match

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    Lions coaching staff announcement elicits some amused responses from fans

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Comedy gold as Toronto lock attempts clearance kick in MLR match featuring Matt Giteau and Adam Ashley-Cooper

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: 135kg prop lines up swan dive from 20 metres out... then re-thinks

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bizarre standoff in Super Rugby tests players on their rulebook knowledge

View All

Amateur

  • 24 WEEKS AGO

    Viral video of Scottish club brawl goes down a storm with rugby community

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    RUGBYDUMP BLITZ: This Best of the Week round up is sure to entertain you

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    RD BLITZ - Disaster, just when it looked so promising...

  • 61 WEEKS AGO

    That glorious moment that will live on forever, like it or not

  • 62 WEEKS AGO

    RD Blitz - PROP'S Lionel Messi wizardy creates incredible try

View All

Player Features

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bumping off tacklers and taking high balls, Rob Kearney had an impressive Super Rugby debut

  • 13 WEEKS AGO

    Brian Moore on money in modern rugby and how it should never be compared to 'outlier' football

  • 15 WEEKS AGO

    Tuisova's wrecking ball montage will make you grateful you never made it as a pro

  • 21 WEEKS AGO

    New Zealand rugby pod admit Owen Farrell is world class

  • 21 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Bath prop launches Amazon documentary focused on those from non-traditional backgrounds

View All
Lions tour likely to stay with original hosts as time for decision is running out | RugbyDump - Rugby News & Videos