Tuesday 25 April 2017

When is the squad announced, what are the dates? Everything you need to know about the 2017 Lions tour

As the debate rages as to who will make the squad, here is everything you need to know about the Lions tour.

When and where will the squad be named?

Head coach Warren Gatland will name his Lions squad tomorrow (Wednesday April 19, 2017) at the Hilton London Syon Park.  Recent announcements have come after the European Champions Cup semi-finals. This year, however, Gatland will name his touring party before the semis take place.

When does the tour actually start?

The tour begins on June 3 when the Lions take on the New Zealand Provincial Barbarians in Whangarei.

What TV channel will the matches be on?

All matches will be shown live on Sky Sports and Sky Sports HD as well as SkyGo, the online media player. There are no plans for any terrestrial highlights or internet streaming outside of Sky's coverage.

And you can follow all the action on our live blog on Independent.ie.

What is the full set of Lions fixtures?

Game 1: Saturday, June 3 v Provincial Union Team in Whangarei

Game 2: Wednesday, June 7 v Blues in Auckland

Game 3: Saturday, June 10 v Crusaders in Christchurch

Game 4: Tuesday, June 13 v Highlanders in Dunedin

Game 5: Saturday, June 17 v Maori All Blacks in Rotorua

Game 6: Tuesday, June 20 v Chiefs in Hamilton

Game 7: Saturday, June 24 v All Blacks in Auckland

Game 8: Tuesday, June 27 v Hurricanes in Wellington

Game 9: Saturday, July 1 v All Blacks in Wellington

Game 10: Saturday, July 8 v All Blacks in Auckland

Who will be on the plane to New Zealand?

You can see who our experts think will make it here

Who is on the coaching team?

Graham Rowntree and Neil Jenkins have recently been confirmed as the final part of the British & Irish Lions coaching team.

Welshman Jenkins and Englishman Rowntree will, along with fellow coaches Steve Borthwick, Andy Farrell and Rob Howley, complete the team headed by Gatland.

What does the Lions jersey look like?

Lionsssss.JPG  

How can I get tickets?

Around 30,000 fans are expected to make the trip. Tickets for the three Test series range from £79 to £239 while the games against the Super Rugby teams, Maori All Blacks and New Zealand Provincial Barbarians go from £20 from £70.

For those wanting to support the Lions all information about tickets, packages and accommodation are available through by logging on to lionsrugby.com/tours.

New Zealand rugby fans have created an initiative to host British & Irish Lions supporters who are unable to find accommodation.

A Facebook page called Adopt a Lions Fan 2017 has been created by Adam Glishnan after he realised that many Lions supporters cannot attend the tour due to lack of accommodation options. Over 100 participants have since posted on the page.

"I really hope friendships will develop out of this, because rugby is a great vehicle for it," Glishnan told The Guardian.

"We don't want money to change hands at all, we want visitors to experience the famed Kiwi hospitality, and give Kiwi rugby fans to opportunity to look after their Lions guests."

The majority of hotels in cities that are hosting the Tests are 90 per cent booked and services like AirBnb are offering rooms for prices as high as £670 pounds a night.

What are the best odds?

New Zealand to win series 2/7

Draw 40/1

Lions to win series 7/2

Lions record in New Zealand

  • The Lions first played New Zealand in 1904.
  • It was 1930 before the Lions recorded a victory over New Zealand.
  • The Lions’ only Test series triumph to date against New Zealand was in 1971, when they claimed the series 2-1 with one game drawn.
  • The Lions have suffered Test series whitewashes on five occasions in New Zealand, the last of those being 11 years ago.
  • The Lions’ 2005 New Zealand tour, when England’s World Cup-winning supremo Sir Clive Woodward was at the helm, saw them concede 107 points in the Test series.
  • The Lions’ last victory against New Zealand came on the 1993 tour in Wellington.
  • The Lions’ overall record against New Zealand shows six victories, three draws and 29 defeats.
  • The last player to score a try for the Lions against New Zealand was former England flanker Lewis Moody in 2005.
  • A 10-game schedule for next summer’s New Zealand tour will see the Lions play at seven different venues - Whangarei, Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Rotorua, Hamilton and Wellington.
  • Auckland’s Eden Park - venue for the 2011 Rugby World Cup final - will stage two of the three Lions Tests.

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