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Gatland had been due to announce his team to the public on Thursday but it was reported by the Times on Tuesday evening.
The Lions, as a result, brought forward their team announcement by 24 hours and named the squad for the First Test this weekend in Cape Town on Wednesday morning.
Gatland is unsure where the leak came from, but he will adapt how he names his team going forward.
“I don’t know how that happened,” he said.
“It wasn’t a 100 per cent right. Obviously someone has leaked that out, whether that is on purpose or accidentally or someone has betrayed someone’s trust - whether that’s a player or a staff member.
“So, what I’ll do next week is just name the team to the players and name the team to the press straight away.”