Lions set for Baa-Baas clash
The Lions will meet the Barbarians in a high-profile warm-up match in Hong Kong before their tour of Australia in 2013.
They will play the world's most famous invitational side on Saturday June 1 at the 40,000 capacity Hong Kong Stadium in So Kon Po. The ground has also been earmarked for matches in the Japanese-hosted 2019 Rugby World Cup and with a sell-out guaranteed, the gate receipts from the Lions match should help underpin the tour financially.
Once in Australia, the Lions schedule follows a well-worn path, although the emergence of the Melbourne Rebels and the Western Force means the tourists are able to dispense with midweek fixtures against Australia A or Australian Barbarians.
The need for a testing game in Hong Kong becomes evident with the Lions being pitched straight into full-on games against the Force in Perth and the Queensland Reds in Brisbane.
ACT Brumbies provide the midweek opposition in Canberra before the first Test in Brisbane, while the Rebels will do likewise before the second Test in Melbourne. The final week will be left clear ahead of the third Test in Sydney.
2013 TOUR OF AUSTRALIA SCHEDULE
June 1 v Barbarians, Hong Kong
June 5 v Western Force, Perth
June 8 v Queensland Reds, Brisbane
June 12 v NSW-Qld Country, Newcastle
June 15 v NSW Waratahs, Sydney
June 18 v Brumbies, Canberra
June 22 v Australia, Brisbane
June 25 v Melbourne Rebels, Melbourne
June 29 v Australia, Melbourne
July 6 v Australia, Sydney