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Bowe says Gatland inspires confidence

IRELAND wing Tommy Bowe has hailed the winning attitude and mentality of British and Irish Lions coach Warren Gatland.

Ulster star Bowe was a key performer in South Africa four years ago, shining as a wing and centre. The Monaghan native is now back for more after recovering from a serious injury this season and he is impressed with what he has seen.

"My main priority is to get picked in the Test squad, but I want to win. That has been the message from the outset," he said. "Warren is here to do a job, he is here to pick a team that's going to go and win the series.

"He wants to be 2-0 up (in the series) and I think that is exciting for us as players because he's breeding that confidence into us and I think it is really shining down throughout the squad."


Western forced to rest men for Lions

Western Force coach Michael Foley has blamed a tight schedule for having to leave out regular starting players from his squad to face the Lions, with an important Super Rugby clash against the New South Wales Waratahs on Sunday.

Foley expects to give the Lions sterner opposition than they got in Perth a dozen years ago, but was hampered in his selection by the Super Rugby draw and the unavailability of Nick Cummins and Ben McCalman, who're in camp with the Wallabies in Sydney, and injured lock Hugh McMeniman.

He is resting flyhalf Sias Ebersohn, fullback Jayden Hayward, centre Kyle Godwin, prop Pek Cowan, hooker Heath Tessman, and lock Sam Wykes.