Do Not Sell My Personal Information
ADVERTISEMENT
RugbyDump RugbyDump
Thursday May 6, 2021

AWJ set to be Lions skipper as fans eagerly await Gatland squad announcement

AWJ set to be Lions skipper as fans eagerly await Gatland squad announcement

Alun Wyn Jones is expected to be named British and Irish Lions captain for the summer tour to South Africa at lunchtime today.

ADVERTISEMENT

The game’s most capped player with 157 Test appearances is clear favourite for the role ahead of closest rival Maro Itoje after leading Wales to success in the recent Six Nations.

It would be the 35-year-old’s fourth tour, although his role as skipper in the squad announced by Warren Gatland would not guarantee a place in the Test team.

Gatland will name a group of 36 – 20 forwards and 16 backs – at an announcement that is being streamed live online with players discovering for the first time if they have been selected.

One of the biggest calls facing Gatland is whether to include Manu Tuilagi, whose comeback from an Achilles injury in time for the final phase of Sale’s title push is imminent.

The powerful England centre has not played since September, ruling him out of the autumn and Six Nations and making his inclusion a risk, but Gatland will be aware of his unique ability to break the gainline and may decide he is worth the gamble.

The loss of George North to a knee injury has thinned Gatland’s midfield options and Tuilagi would potentially be a more explosive alternative.

ADVERTISEMENT

Ireland captain Johnny Sexton could be one of the biggest casualties due to his ongoing issues with concussion that have limited his game time since the Six Nations.

His absence would open up a vacancy at fly-half, possibly for Finn Russell of Scotland with Wales’ Dan Biggar expected to tour and Owen Farrell likely to travel as a centre.

Marcus Smith has been shredding defences for Harlequins this season and the uncapped 22-year-old is among an extended group of over 50 players to have been notified that they are under consideration.

It would be a seismic call for Smith to be included among the 36, however, given he has yet to make his England debut.

ADVERTISEMENT

Harlequins’ mid-season resurgence has propelled Danny Care into contention at scrum-half three years after the 34-year-old veteran of 84 caps fell out of favour under Eddie Jones.

Care has formed the Gallagher Premiership’s most creative half-back partnership alongside Smith and he could profit from Ben Youngs ruling himself out of consideration.

Related Articles

  • 7 WEEKS AGO

    Aaron Smith emphatic about his pick for greatest...

  • 7 WEEKS AGO

    Lions legends blast missed "reddest of red...

  • 8 WEEKS AGO

    Another Lions blow as George North is ruled...



ADVERTISEMENT

Great Tries

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    Big front rower sprints 70m for MLR intercept try for the ages

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Lovely Finn Russell pass helps Racing 92 reach Top 14 semis

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    Eye-opening compilation shows why Taulupe Faletau could harm Springboks this Summer

  • 2 WEEKS AGO

    The time Waisale Serevi used his iconic hitch-kick to carve up Scotland in 2000

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    Veainu finishes superb try after octopus style offload from Waisea

View All

Big Hits & Dirty Play

  • 2 DAYS AGO

    Malakai Fekitoa delivers punishing tackle for country of birth at Monaco 7s

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: 20-year-old Lynagh sits Bristol star Semi Radradra on his arse in Prem semi-final

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Troubling scenes as Ntamack carried off following nasty head clash

  • 4 DAYS AGO

    The time James Horwill's face got re-arranged by French fists in 2008

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    This video of crazy punches and red mist moments is racking up millions of views

View All

See It To Believe It

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Brock James' infamous choke in 2010 Heineken Cup clash

  • 3 DAYS AGO

    Best tries and reaction to Quins' EPIC comeback which secured Prem final spot

  • 5 DAYS AGO

    WATCH: Five minutes of outrageous handling skills from rugby legends

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    World's fastest pass up for grabs when Smith and Dupont go head-to-head in unique challenge

  • 1 WEEK AGO

    WATCH: The best and worst of when forwards have a go at kicking

View All

Funnies

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    Joe Marler elated in special interview as fans return to The Stoop

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: One of the luckiest and most bizarre tries you will EVER see

  • 3 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Reds players caught out in hilarious celebration blooper vs Chiefs

  • 4 WEEKS AGO

    WATCH: Faz, Piutau and Burns star in hilarious try fail compilation

  • 5 WEEKS AGO

    MLR: Giltinis howler sees try overruled despite attempts to celebrate

View All

Amateur

  • 33 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 70 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 71 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 71 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 71 WEEKS AGO

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

View All

Player Features

  • 17 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 23 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 24 WEEKS AGO

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

  • 30 WEEKS AGO

    New Zealand rugby pod admit Owen Farrell is world class

  • 30 WEEKS AGO

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

View All
AWJ set to be Lions skipper as fans eagerly await Gatland squad announcement | RugbyDump - Rugby News & Videos