Alun Wyn Jones insists Lions series against South Africa ‘NEEDS to go ahead this year’ as Wales skipper reveals home nations captains have urged officials to ensure tour takes place amid ongoing Covid crisis
- Hasty contingency plans are taking place as tour cannot proceed as scheduled
- It appears the only viable alternative is to stage the Lions tour in UK and Ireland
- Alun Wyn Jones insists Lions Tour must be rescued amid ongoing Covid crisis
Wales captain Alun Wyn Jones revealed on Wednesday that he and his home nations counterparts have urged officials to ensure the Lions series against South Africa goes ahead somewhere, somehow — preferably this summer.
Hasty contingency planning is currently taking place as the eight-match tour cannot proceed as scheduled due to Covid and it appears that the only viable alternative is to stage Tests in the UK and Ireland.
‘I think it needs to go ahead this year,’ said Jones, a decorated Lions lock and skipper. ‘The jury is out on where it will happen.
Alun Wyn Jones insists the Lions Tour must be rescued amid the ongoing Covid crisis
‘We all know the jeopardy that it’s in. All being well, everyone will be safe and looked after if it does go ahead.
‘It would be a travesty if the fans weren’t able to go and see it. Having been involved in a few, it’s a very special tour and the fans make it that way.
‘From a captain’s point of view (Jones, Owen Farrell, Johnny Sexton and Stuart Hogg) we’re all in agreement that, if it can, it should go ahead this year. We have been involved in a mini think-tank and those were the things I said in that meeting.’
Scotland captain Hogg said: ‘Whether it is here or South Africa, as long as the tour takes place in some form we will all be very happy.’
His national coach, Gregor Townsend – tipped for a role within Warren Gatland’s Lions management team – added: ‘It is a huge positive aspect of our sport. As long as it goes ahead – whether it is this year or next year – it is really important we keep hold of that.’
Jones admitted it would be a ‘travesty’ if fans weren’t able to attend the Lions Tour
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