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The British & Irish Lions and SA Rugby have confirmed a revised fixture list for the 2021 Castle Lager Lions Series.

Originally announced back in December 2019, the dates and fixtures for the tour has changed due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

A smaller tour than in recent years, the Lions will play 8 games in 5 weeks, culminating in a three match Test series against 2019 Rugby World Cup winners, the Springboks.

However, in May 2021 the British & Irish Lions released a statement confirming their dates for the tour had changed, and unfortunately all matches will now be played behind closed doors. 

The Emirates Lions will replace the SA Invitational team, a decision made to reduce the risks that may come from picking a squad of players from around the country.

 

Original Tour Dates:

Saturday 3rd July: British & Irish Lions v Stormers - Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town

Wednesday 7th July: British & Irish Lions v SA ‘Invitational’ - Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium, Port Elizabeth

Saturday 10th July: British & Irish Lions v Sharks - Kings Park, Durban

Wednesday 14th July: British & Irish Lions v South Africa 'A' - Mbombela Stadium, Nelspruit

Saturday 17th July: British & Irish Lions v Bulls - Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria

Saturday 24th July: Springboks v British & Irish Lions - FNB Stadium, Johannesburg

Saturday 31st July: Springboks v British & Irish Lions - Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town

Saturday 7th August: Springboks v British & Irish Lions - Ellis Park, Johannesburg

New Tour Dates:

Saturday 3rd July: Emirates Lions v The British & Irish Lions (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

Wednesday 7th July: Cell C Sharks v The British & Irish Lions (Emirates Airline Park, Johannesburg) KO 2000 (SAT) / 1900 (BST)

Saturday 10th July: Vodacom Bulls v The British & Irish Lions (Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

Wednesday 14th July: South Africa ‘A’ v The British & Irish Lions (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 2000 (SAT) / 1900 (BST)

Saturday 17th July: DHL Stormers v The British & Irish Lions (Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

Saturday 24th July: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (1st Test, Cape Town Stadium, Cape Town) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

Saturday 31st July: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (2nd Test, FNB Stadium, Johannesburg) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

Saturday 7th Aug: Springboks v The British & Irish Lions (3rd Test, FNB Stadium, Johannesburg) KO 1800 (SAT) / 1700 (BST)

 

Warren Gatland, who led the British & Irish Lions in 2013 and 2017, will once again take charge in 2021. He has yet to lose a Test series, defeating Australia 2-1 in 2013, and drawing with the All Blacks in 2017. The Kiwi's coaching team was revealed in early April 2021 which features Gregor Townsend (attack), Robin McBryde (forwards), Steve Tandy (defence) and Neil Jenkins (kicking).

Alun Wyn Jones will captain the side on his fourth tour, the Welshman taking over from Sam Warburton. The second row has won a world record 157 international caps, featuring in the last nine Lions Test matches, including captaining the team to victory in the decisive third Test against Australia in Sydney in 2013. He also led Wales to 2021 Guinness Six Nations victory.

The squad includes 10 players each from Wales and England, with Scotland and Ireland both providing 8 men. 

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