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    A Lion in South Africa is special.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/rugby_union/7340625.stm

    A proper bloody tour!

    Tour fixtures:

    30 May: Highveld XV; Royal Bafokeng, Rustenburg
    3 June: Golden Lions; Ellis Park, Johannesburg
    6 June: Cheetahs; Vodacom Park, Bloomfontein
    10 June: Sharks; ABSA Park, Durban
    13 June: Western Province; Newlands, Cape Town
    16/17 June: Coastal XV; Port Elizabeth (Venue to be confirmed)
    20 June: South Africa (first Test); ABSA Park, Durban
    23 June: Emerging Springboks; Newlands, Cape Town
    27 June: South Africa (second Test); Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
    4 July: South Africa (third Test); Ellis Park, Johannesburg

    Let's hope it's as successful as the 1997 tour.

    #2
    A Lion in South Africa is special.

    Let's hope we don't take 65 players, and 18 coaches this time.

    Geech and Edwards sounds like a better combination than Clive Woodward and Alistair Campbell

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      #3
      A Lion in South Africa is special.

      The posts on this thread appears to have become invisible...

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        #4
        A Lion in South Africa is special.

        Sadly, no crazy Jim Telfer antics as he's too busy cannibalising his Lions 1997 forwards' speeches for Guinness adverts.

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          #5
          A Lion in South Africa is special.

          The first game of the tour takes place the same day as the Guinness Premiership final at Twickenham.
          Piss poor planning prohibits perfect performances.

          Or something.

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            #6
            A Lion in South Africa is special.

            Ridiculous. Theyre now looking to move the GP final....by swapping with the HEC final....which is always an all French affair isn't it....

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              #7
              A Lion in South Africa is special.

              Nice work by the RFU.

              Missed out on Edwards.
              Shaft Ashton.
              Retain Wells & Ford
              Appoint an untried manager on a four year contract.

              The Lions should get Ashton onboard as their attack coach. The England job may well have exposed some of his managerial defencies (which he recognised himself) but there is no doubting his abilities as a pure coach.

              If Wales refuse to give Gats a pop at the Lions, then Geech, Edwards and Ashton would look pretty hard to beat.

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                #8
                A Lion in South Africa is special.

                My understanding was that Geech had already been given first refusal by Gerald Davies prior to Gatland's success with Wales. So Gatland would only get the offer if McGeechan turned it down. It was Geech who told Edwards that he needed a higher profile international job than the England A coach, as it would make it easier for Geech to bring him along on the Lions tour. Which suggests that McGeechan has always intended to be head coach.

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                  #9
                  A Lion in South Africa is special.

                  I like McGeechan and the Lions tour of 1997 was great but I remember Guscott's complaint on the 'Living with the Lions" video where he bemoaned the team's lack of ambition.
                  Maybe Geech was just being pragmatic because the key players were hard and defensive. The English forwards, Gibbs and Jenkins the Boot. However while it was gritty, fascinating and really stirring, I think the game has changed and I don't think the same tactics or even similar tactics would work anymore. I'm unconvinced that Geech can harness the flair that is needed. I look forward to another LIons tour where Vainikolo will be selected in front of Shane Williams, Jason White will get in before Martyn Williams and so on.
                  You're right though. It's a proper tour. Anyone want to suggest a squad of 30 now?

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                    #10
                    A Lion in South Africa is special.

                    Guscott can be so full of shit. I wouldn't claim that the 97 Lions threw it about, but they certainly didn't play a 10 man game. They had a balanced attacking game, with Gregor Townsend at 10 (a creative, off-the-cuff fly half) and a willingness to run at the Boks at every opportunity. They played good rugby.

                    Take your point about selection FP...BUT...the Welsh stars do need to prove that they can hack it against southern hemisphere sides, which this vintage have yet to do.

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                      #11
                      A Lion in South Africa is special.

                      I like McGeechan and the Lions tour of 1997 was great but I remember Guscott's complaint on the 'Living with the Lions" video where he bemoaned the team's lack of ambition.
                      Where exactly did he say this? I watched the DVD quite recently and there wasn't a word on it about that. Guscott's main spoken contribution is having a joke with the forwards about getting stitched after Neil Back elbowed him in the head. His other appearances are basically scoring tries and the series winning drop goal (having missed one in the previous match).

                      The conservative arguments seemed to be Fran Cotton on the phone to someone in England, the coaches discussing whether to pick Hill or Back and a video replay bit quite early on where they're praising the team and Paul Wallace in particular for some good handling skills.

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                        #12
                        A Lion in South Africa is special.

                        Watch it again. In the changing room before or at half time during the final test and Guscott says something like, "If only we'd shown as much ambition in attack....blah, blah, blah......as we have in defence."
                        It's definitely on there.
                        I wasn't trying to suggest that they played a ten man game but there was a definite emphasis on being tough to beat. Nothing wrong with that and perhaps that was the best thing to do with the players available.
                        I agree with the point that this bunch of Welsh players haven't proved it against the southern hemisphere. They should have had a chance on the last Lions tour but let's not go there again.

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                          #13
                          A Lion in South Africa is special.

                          That might be on the second disk which I don't think I've bothered watching.

                          The Welsh added some pretty good players to that team. Gibbs running through Du Randt has gone down in rugby folklore.

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