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wearing my four-becomes-one lions hat, I think Warren is a likable guy with great man managment skills, look what he got out of Croft and Sheridan in S.A. his record with Wasps and Waikato and of course Wales' 6n's success. But, being a national coach brings baggage onto lions tours and its not about the other three countries, its about the welsh players and the pressure to pick them to keep things rosey come the november tests and beyond. if you are a national coach then you are pulled in two directions. Personally I do prefer to give the role to someone not involved in test rugby. that doesn't mean they haven't coached at the highest level before, just that they aren't affilliated to one single country in June/July 2013. I not saying we're doomed with Gatland, far from it, but you are already creating baggage for what is always a tough ask, especially in the professional era where we're starting from scratch vs a experienced 22 who know each other's game.
so who could you pick to coach the lions outside England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland? Geech has retired from lions duty.
Well the obvious choice is the Leinster coach Joe Schmidt, what he's done with leinster is fantastic! he'd be my no.1 choice. after that you look at other sucessfull european cup coaches. Maybe Guy Noves, if he can speak fluent English. I've always liked Pierre Berbizier who had Italy playing their best rugby in their recent history. Then you've got Lynn Jones, Jim Mallender and others who may bring something to the party. I don't think current international coaches necessarily make for good lions coaches and its kinda mechanical / unimaginative to pick one of the four national coaches every 4 years.
Posted 11:37 11th July 2012
I have to agree that Andy Robinson definately knows how to beat SH teams, Scotland have managed in 3 out of 4 meetings with them( OZ x 2 + SA) despite being a rubbish team according to almost everyone except ourselves. If Robbo can beat OZ twice with Scotland, surely he could do the same with the lions?
Posted 00:19 28th June 2012
I have to agree in how Scotland is generally ignored these days, no matter how well they seem to play. We beat Australia back to back and also have a win over South Africa to our credit, not to mention series wins in Argentina and an undefeated tour this summer. Remember that this six nations Robinson was introducing an almost entirely new backline....Laidlaw, Scott, Jones, Hogg and now Visser(in the summer.) If you look at Ireland's win record in the last three years or so, it isnt alot better than Scotlands, and Argentina's is even worse overall. Scotland will most likely beat South Africa and Tonga in the Autumn and should win at least three in next years six nations... unless of course the world doesn't end on the 21st of December this year...
Posted 00:12 28th June 2012
2013 - Australia vs British and Irish Lions - and both to be Coached by Kiwis. Is that not outright Sad, that they have no one good enough amongst their own to lead these teams? Such Irony.
Posted 09:55 27th June 2012
Andy Robinson as Lions coach you are kidding right? This is the same Andy Robinson who led Scotland to the wooden spoon this year and was the first Scotland coach not to get them to the quarter finals. I plan to go out to Oz for the tour but I wouldn't relish going if Robinson was coach.
Appointing Gatland does make things potentially awkward for him and for Wales. Someone who is impartial would have been preferable Joe Schmidt, Jake White or even McGeechan again. I wonder if those doubting Gatland have seen the documentary 'Living with the Pride' from the 09 tour. Gatland bought in to the Lions philosophy and 2 Grand Slams for Wales and a World Cup Semi Final isn't exactly a bad c.v., record against SH teams is disappointing though. The Lions will have a very strong team and I think will have enough to beat Australia.
"I bet the Lions wished they'd had a kicker like Patterson available to them in that 2nd test match." What game were you watching I think you'll find Stephen Jones knocked over all of his kicks that game and played probably the game of his career. Paterson should have toured with the Lions at least once, how he missed out in 2005 was criminal.
Posted 09:46 24th June 2012
Sir Clive should have just said "don't do what I did"
Posted 15:43 21st June 2012
I think you need to put those ┐wins┐ in context, always in bad weather and by the tiniest of score margins. I think Andy Robinsons ability can be better judged by his bread and butter job, the six nations, where they regularly play Italy to avoid a whitewash. And that isnt good enough for a Lions Tour. As for series wins in Argentina, Wales have managed that too. They are 0-2 down in Oz at moment but have lost by the smallest of margins also and all without having Gats to guide them, which they miss.
Posted 13:48 20th June 2012
@pevans3131, I couldn't agree more with your comments. The problem being that nobody pays Scotland any mind. Even this site made it seem like the SH was undefeated against the NH this season. It seems like when Scotland beats Australia everyone calls it a fluke, even though it has happened a couple times in a row now. I think Andy's accomplishments with Scotland are still being overshadowed by his poor run as England's coach. Unfortunately Scotland not making the RWC qf's didn't help him. But the disregard Scottish rugby is shown was clearly evident when only 2 Scots made the initial Lions squad in '09 and only 2 more being called in as injury cover. I bet the Lions wished they'd had a kicker like Patterson available to them in that 2nd test match.
Posted 12:35 20th June 2012
ABlack. The last time Lions beat a team in a series. That sentence can be read two ways. One answer is: the last game they played. So its your memory that is the issue there.
The last series they won was 4 tours ago. Three losses since. If you think Lions tours are over rated you know nothing about what is valuable in rugby. Nothing about the history. That is the dumbest comment I have ever seen on any rugby blog.
Posted 10:35 20th June 2012
Could take Robbie Deans as coach, he'll be out of a job at that time and knows southern hemisphere rugby very well ;-).
Posted 10:10 20th June 2012
As a Welshman i hope Gatland doesn't coach the Lions. Mostly because we'll be screwed without him. We've already seen how much we miss his influence and that Howley isn't up to it yet, will he ever be?
Quite frankly i couldn't give a rats behind when it comes to the Lions, Wales first!
Posted 10:06 20th June 2012
Gatland has acomplished...what? His welsh team are currently 0 for 2 in Australia, during his tenure, Wales have won exactly 1 game against SH sides, he qualifies..how? Andy Robinson has won 3 against SH tier 1 sides and beaten Argentina twice in Argentina...what am I or the Lions committee missing?
Posted 03:28 20th June 2012
Gats is perfect for the job has loyalties to Wales as coach but not as national of Wales so easy to make those tough calls. Also has insight to SH game to choose right players to get job done.
Posted 23:41 19th June 2012
When was the last time the Lions actually beat a SH team in a test series? Cant recall. Very overhyped these Lions teams
Posted 20:06 19th June 2012
This is a mere discussion and in some instances answers to specific questions in order to (probably) make a story. In all fairness there are some points here though as in the professional era, the Lions Tour is a different entity to that which it once was. I also agree that a coach outside the home nations should be considered. However, that asside, Gatland is the right man. I agree though that it has to be managed carefully as Wales would and should look to do well in the World Cup. Favourites? I don't think so as it is right that any team with that tag needs to be beating all others. Look at the history of winners and they have always been constantly able, or actually, beating all others. At the moment none of the Northern Hemisphere teams are doing that. This tournament is a long way off yet so we don't need to get too doom and gloom but look at the games that have just been played recently. The NH teams are just way way off. I had hope that Wales would start to put down a marker but they were, by their self regarded standards, poor. Games like that are always going to be close but Wales have reverted to type and can't see a game out. Warren has got a fair bit on his plate to sort Wales out without the distraction of the Lions Tour. Good luck WG as you are going to need it.
Posted 17:54 19th June 2012
His Welsh side are undertaking a 3 match test series of Oz with the odd mid week game - sounds like the best preparation a lions coach could have ahead of 2013. Gatland has been involved with Ireland and the Lions in previous years so he knows what is in store and lets face it he is not afraid of making the tough decisions and upsetting people - he did choose a certain Sam Warburton to captain Wales ahead a rather big tournament.
I personally prefer the three test match series instead of a different opponent each week like previous years.
Posted 17:48 19th June 2012
Sir Clive what are you doing?! Surely you would really want a Lions win and Wales not to win in 2015? Why on earth would you advise Gatland against this? Hopefully he will suspect you of reverse psychology and take the Lions role.
Personally I can't get to grips with a non British Lions head coach. Andy Robinson?? As the coach with the best track record vs SHem of the Lions nations he should be above Gats. And he's coached England when they also regularly beat Oz. So he's got much better knowledge of all the Lions players. Would love to see Andy with some try scorers.
Posted 17:42 19th June 2012
Wales can go all the way to where in 2015? Certainly Clive isn't calling them a favorite for the RWC champion. They'd have to beat SH teams to be considered a favorite; and that is something they aren't doing. During a Lions tour the best Welsh players will be w/ the Lions and the Welsh tour will be used to develop young Welsh players. His comments seem way off to me.
Posted 15:48 19th June 2012
There have been many Lions coaches ,who also havent suffered that fate,What must be remembered is they are 2 very distinct jobs.Also circumstances have changed now WG will have the whole of the 2013 season to just do the Lions job.,and pick the best players for the tour to Australia .Wheather they are welsh ,irish,english or scottish ,just shouldnt be a factor .I feel the players understand this instinctly,the objective is to get a squad /team able to beat Australia in that series fulll stop .A national coaches job is different as he has to find and intergrate new talant into a style /gameplan ,and win championships ,and IRB ranking points ,while beating a varity of opponents,from New Zealand to Georgia ,2 very different jobs ,and objectives
Posted 13:46 19th June 2012
starting to have my doubts about gatland. if you want a team with dynamic attractive backplay (in line with the B&I Lions tradition), watertight defence, powerful forwards, never-say-die team spirit, and selection purely on merit while at the same time creating fierce competition for places, then Joe Schmidt is the man for the job
Posted 12:44 19th June 2012
|Saturday , June 1|
|Barbarians vs British & Irish Lions||12:30|
|Wednesday, June 5|
|Western Force vs British & Irish Lions||11:00|
|Saturday , June 8|
|Reds vs British & Irish Lions||10:30|
|Tuesday , June 11|
|NSW-Queensland Country vs British & Irish Lions||10:30|
|Saturday , June 15|
|Waratahs vs British & Irish Lions||10:30|
|Tuesday , June 18|
|Brumbies vs British & Irish Lions||10:30|
|Saturday , June 22|
|Australia vs British & Irish Lions||11:00|
|Tuesday , June 25|
|Melbourne Rebels vs British & Irish Lions||10:30|
|Saturday , June 29|
|Australia vs British & Irish Lions||11:00|
|Saturday , July 6|
|Australia vs British & Irish Lions||11:00|