The British and Irish Lions have made three appointments for the 2017 tour, including Paul Stridgeon as Head of Strength and Conditioning.
Head Analyst Rhodri Bown, Head of Medical Eanna Falvey and Head of Strength and Conditioning Stridgeon will support Head Coach Warren Gatland and his coaching team on the 10-match tour.
The trio will join up with the Lions after the Six Nations and Gatland said: “Rhodri, Paul and Eanna have a lot of Lions experience, including being part of a winning team in 2013 and they know what is required for us to be successful in New Zealand. They will bring a wealth of knowledge and skill to their roles and I know they will fit well into the environment we are trying to create.”
Tour Manager John Spencer, Gatland, Stridgeon and Falvey have just finished a ‘recce’ of New Zealand, visiting all seven match venues, training grounds, gyms and hotels in each city and town in preparation for the tour.
Spencer said: “It’s been a really useful 10 days. Preparation is critical to any tour and it’s important that we get the detail right – from the size of the players’ beds to what food they will eat, medical provision to training ground surfaces. We want the players to be able to concentrate on training and playing. We’ve had a great welcome and you can sense the excitement building ahead of June.”
Welsh Rugby Union Head of Performance Analysis Bown joined the WRU as Performance Analyst in 2004 and was appointed to his current role in 2016.
He toured with the British and Irish Lions to South Africa in 2009 and to Australia in 2013.
Meanwhile Falvey was part of the medical team in Australia in 2013, he was team doctor to the Irish rugby team from 2009-2015 and doctor with Munster for four years from 2003-2007.
Stridgeon is currently Head of Strength and Conditioning at Toulon and will be touring with Lions for a third time following 2009 in South Africa and the successful series win in Australia in 2013.