Rugby

“Protect Lions tour at all costs” cries Rassie Erasmus

It is more than a mere rumour that World rugby has every intention of streamlining the rugby calendar between that of the southern and northern hemispheres and so do many of the top rugby countries in order to have more resting time for their players. With that has come the fear of reducing the Lions tours as its demanding schedule might have no space in the proposed rugby calendar.

Springbok coach Rassie Erasmus had his say on the future tours by the British and Irish Lions insisting that they should be protected as restructuring goes on. Powerhouses like England are having plans to make massive changes in their seasons which threatens to cut the length of the 2021 series in South Africa.

With the English domestic season being revamped from 2019-20 onwards, the 2021 Lions tour is scheduled to be cut back. In previous tours, the Lions played three tests and seven additional games against local teams. However, in 2021 there will only be five additional games, making a total of eight.

“I can’t really comment on the structure and amount of matches, but my first test match was against the Lions, so for me they are a very special team,” Erasmus told a press conference.

“When I was coaching at Munster, I had the chance to experience more the soul of the Lions. When you’re on the other side, they are your opponents, but when you’re here you almost understand what it’s all about.

“I don’t know if cutting it down to less matches will take that soul away, because I think the Lions will always be something big.

“But if there’s anything that threatens the Lions’ future, I think that should be taken out of the equation, because it’s a wonderful organisation,” he said.

As told by the BBC

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