The success in Australasia in 2013 and 2017, coupled with the continued training and experience of Warren Gatland, means that next year’s British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa will be “massive” and a fitting challenge for the Springboks. Rugby fans can book British lions rugby tickets on our website on exclusively discounted prices.
The first test is slated for a year from today in Johannesburg and Springbok coach Jacques Nienaber, speaking on the SA Rugby Podcast, said he expects more of the same from Gatland and his touring team when they arrive in South Africa in 2021.
It will be Nienaber’s second encounter with the British and Irish Lions after he was involved with DHL’s Western Province in 2009. Tourists won a tough battle in torrential rain 26-23 at DHL Newlands in Cape Town.
Four years later, the Gatland Lions beat the Wallabies 2-1, winning the Final Test 41-16, the most points scored in a Test by the European touring team and their biggest victory since a beating Australia 31-0. 1966. In 2017 Gatland led a strong squad to New Zealand, where they drew the Test series after the final match ended at a 15-15 deadlock.
“Warren Gatland’s ability and training experience, and the teams he put together on his two previous tours to Australia and New Zealand, speak for themselves,” Nienaber said.
The series win in Australia was the first in 16 years, since they beat the Boks in 1997, and we know how difficult it is to get a win or draw in New Zealand.
“Warren and his coaching staff are highly experienced in setting up Lions, what it takes to fuse players from four teams and four different play styles, and what buttons to press to unlock emotions, abilities, and grunts from various countries. They will certainly have all their ducks in a row and it will be a great challenge for us.”
One area of concern for Nienaber is that the Springboks won’t know exactly what to expect from the British and Irish Lions, but they are taking notes from an unlikely source: Hamilton in New Zealand.
“The negative for us is that we don’t know what kind of playing style they will bring to South Africa, said Nienaber. We are looking at Warren with the Chiefs right now, to see what direction they are going, as he could take some of that to SA next year. Certainly, there is enough intrigue and stories involved that they will make a massive shock next year.”
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