When is the British and Irish Lions Tour 2017 and what is the schedule?

Telegraph Sport
Sam Waburton will captain the Lions against the All Blacks - Getty Images Europe

When does the Lions tour begin?

The 10-match British and Irish Lions tour began on June 3 when Warren Gatland's men took on the New Zealand Provincial Barbarians in Whangarei.

Thereafter there were another five matches before the first Test in Auckland on June 24.

What TV channel will be showing the matches?

All matches will be shown live on Sky Sports and Sky Sports HD as well as SkyGo, the online media player.

Those who prefer radio will be happy to learn talkSPORT will be providing live UK commentary of all matches including the Tests.

There are no plans for any terrestrial highlights or internet streaming outside of Sky's coverage.

You'll also be able to follow live updates from all Lions matches right here.

How long to go until the first Test between Lions and New Zealand?

What time will the matches kick off?

As it stands, all matches are penciled in for 8.35am BST. But that may be subject to change.

What is the full set of Lions fixtures?

Ten matches in all, with three Tests against the All Blacks.

Lions tour to New Zealand 2017 - fixtures

Where in NZ will the games take place?

Here's where they're playing, including warm-up matches.

British Lions Tour - Itenerary

Who is in the squad?

Here's how Gavin Mairs reported it on April 19.

Warren Gatland agonised until the 11th hour over his British and Irish Lions selection before insisting that England centre Jonathan Joseph had to be included in his squad to travel to New Zealand. He also fought to take one of the biggest ­Lions parties ever assembled – 41 players, four more than originally planned – at an extra cost of more than £600,000.

Gatland told his coaching team that there was no way he could leave out Joseph because of the problems the 25-year-old Bath ­centre caused when playing against his Wales side in the Six Nations.

Rookie Ireland centre Garry Ringrose came agonisingly close to selection for the tour but Joseph got the nod.

British Lions Tour - Nationalities ages and caps

It is understood that the make-up of the Lions midfield dominated the final three-hour selection meeting on Tuesday, during which the decision was also taken to leave out England captain Dylan Hartley and Wasps lock Joe Launchbury and include surprise selections Jared Payne, the Irish centre and full-back, Ross Moriarty, the Wales flanker, and Tommy Seymour, the Scotland wing.

“We had a good discussion about the midfield and one of the things I said to the rest of the coaches was that we can’t leave Jonathan Joseph out,” said Gatland.

Here's Will Greenwood's verdict on each of the players:

Lions squad: Will Greenwood's verdict

Latest Lions news

Jack Nowell has challenged the British and Irish Lions to go for the jugular against New Zealand on Saturday.

England wing Nowell plundered two tries in Tuesday's 34-6 win over the Chiefs in Hamilton to catapult himself into late contention for a role in the first All Blacks Test.

The Exeter flyer could struggle to push past George North, Anthony Watson and Elliot Daly for a place on Saturday, but his return to form against the Chiefs means he could well feature later in the Test series.

The Lions ran in some classy tries against the Chiefs as their backline finally clicked - and Nowell has insisted the Lions must bid to repeat that feat against the All Blacks.

Chiefs vs Lions: player ratings

Asked if the Lions must transfer the attacking display from the Chiefs into Saturday's Test opener, Nowell replied: "I think we've got to; if you let any New Zealand team, let alone the All Blacks, play rugby, they're going to really play.

"They're going to chuck the ball around a lot, they're going to try to get around you, they're going to try all sorts.

"So a massive thing with what Andy Farrell does with us in our defence is about putting teams under massive pressure.

"And then when we do get chances we've got to take them, they are very rare in these sorts of games, but when you get the opportunities you've got to take them."

Nowell insisted the Lions' stylish play in the comprehensive Chiefs win was only a matter of time, as the tourists continue to build connections.

Who would you pick in your Lions XV?

You can pick your team here.

Lions team picker

What have the players been saying?

Elliot Daly on Joe Launchbury:

“I think he was probably more overjoyed for me,” Daly said. “He congratulated me as soon as my name was announced. I was hoping his name would be announced as well but unfortunately it wasn’t. I was gutted for him.

“Of course he was disappointed. He was gutted when it was announced and he was not involved but he is one of those guys who takes everything in his stride. He took it really well, moved on and congratulated me because he is a great guy.”

Lions captain Sam Warburton:

Warburton stood down as Wales captain before the Six Nations Championship but stepped back up again for the Lions, despite thinking the call from head coach Warren Gatland was a prank.

“I was in a supermarket car park back home. My wife was just in the shop getting some bread and milk,” he said at a lavish squad announcement in Brentford. “I didn’t want to go in because there is a cashier there who always wants to talk about rugby. I actually hung up on ‘Gats’ first of all when I got the call.”

What is the Lions' record in New Zealand?

Facts and figures | Lions in New Zealand

Latest odds

Odds on the series winner as of June 20:

  • New Zealand - 1/5
  • Lions - 11/2
  • Draw - 40/1

 

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