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Should we continue British & Irish Lions Tours?

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Post by Steffan on Fri 03 Jan 2020, 8:28 pm

First topic message reminder :

This discussion came up the other day so I thought I would put it out there on here. I am impartial on the subject as I don't really follow Lions tours that much

They make money so I guess they will never be scrapped although I did read the other day after the disastrous tour of New Zealand under Clive Woodward and Alastair Campbell the future of the Lions did look in jeopardy

What is everyone's opinion...rugby tradition that should be kept...or an outdated concept in the modern professional era?


Regards

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Post by Pot Hale on Tue 07 Jan 2020, 7:45 pm

I never understand why England is used as the bell-weather or measure for something in the game.  Invariably, it turns out to be the exception, the extreme, the most, or outside the norm for other known reasons.
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Post by maestegmafia on Tue 07 Jan 2020, 8:10 pm

Rugby Fan wrote:
maestegmafia wrote:Really don’t think the pay is the driving force and I would be surprised if the pay is any different to any other international tour.
Here's the base pay for players who made it all the way through the following tours

2005 - £22,000
2009 - £38,000
2013 - £45-50,000
2017 - £70,000

There have also been win bonuses, so the 2013 players may have earned more for the series win than the 2017 players did for the draw.

For comparison, England players have been getting match fees of £25,000 a Test. In the World Cup, every squad member got £13,000 per pool match no matter if they played. Don't know what happened for the cancelled match.


Well done for finding that.

So £70k for the whole tour for the lions and £25k per match for England players at the RWC. It’s not much different to normal internationals pay day.

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Post by Rugby Fan on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 10:14 am

maestegmafia wrote:So £70k for the whole tour for the lions and £25k per match for England players at the RWC. It’s not much different to normal internationals pay day.

£25k is the England match fee for standard tests, it was structured differently at the World Cup. I've seen it written that Welsh players get £5,300 per Test. Of course, the contracts are structured differently, but it would jibe with what we regularly hear that England players are the best-compensated.


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Post by maestegmafia on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 11:02 am

Rugby Fan wrote:
maestegmafia wrote:So £70k for the whole tour for the lions and £25k per match for England players at the RWC. It’s not much different to normal internationals pay day.

£25k is the England match fee for standard tests, it was structured differently at the World Cup. I've seen it written that Welsh players get £5,300 per Test. Of course, the contracts are structured differently, but it would jibe with what we regularly hear that England players are the best-compensated.


I see, good point but comparative to RWC the earnings are similar and that’s probably a good comparison. I concur a financial incentive is significant but in all honesty I would imagine the honour and historical significance of being a lion far out ways the extra income as a player

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Post by TightHEAD on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 1:13 pm

25K a game isn't much going by London prices.
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Post by maestegmafia on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 1:27 pm

TightHEAD wrote:25K a game isn't much going by London prices.

Aye I hear Saracens players get double that ha ha ha

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Post by rodders on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 3:17 pm

Definitely time to let it go, the rugby calendar is too packed as it is. More and more it is becoming just about the test series and less about the whole tour.

Unfortunately some Welsh players will miss the opportunity to put themselves in the shop window to English and French clubs but you have to move with the times.... Whistle
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Post by maestegmafia on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 9:01 pm

rodders wrote:Definitely time to let it go, the rugby calendar is too packed as it is. More and more it is becoming just about the test series and less about the whole tour.

Unfortunately some Welsh players will miss the opportunity to put themselves in the shop window to English and French clubs but you have to move with the times.... Whistle

That’s a very cynical view

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Post by Cyril on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 9:12 pm

Rodders is right though. It does make you wonder whether Gats also moonlighted as an agent for Welsh players and picked a whole swathe of them to try and put them in the shop window and take his filthy 10 percent?

Cynical, moi?

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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 9:46 pm

Cyril wrote:Rodders is right though. It does make you wonder whether Gats also moonlighted as an agent for Welsh players and picked a whole swathe of them to try and put them in the shop window and take his filthy 10 percent?

Cynical, moi?

Oh god are you still crying over your favourite players not getting picked? It's literally a case of; World class coach and series winner Vs overinflated opinion of fat guy on the internet. Only one winner there.

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Post by Cyril on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 9:48 pm

Gats isn’t fat, he’s just got big bones.

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Post by mikey_dragon on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 9:50 pm

Oh come on Cyril, you know Gats doesn't use Twitter. He'd be getting death threats from the Irish like Jonathan Davies did... #BODgate

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Post by 123456789. on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 10:03 pm

I think we entirely need to keep the Lions in the game. It's one of those few rugby moments that makes people stop to watch. We need a something a bit different more often than every four years. But it does need to change. The club fixtures are growing tiresome. At best the host nations have four or five teams able to put up a fight. In effect the Lions first team probably only has one, maybe two, games to actually prepare for a fully blooded test match.
I think the Lions years should be used to trial rugby changes. The Champions Cup should be reduced to a 16 team elite tournament for the year to afford more time for the tour and the November test series should be cut back by a game to cater for it. We need to recognise that the Lions are one of rugby's flagship teams and that they offer something unique in sport. In that spirit they need to be utilised as a vehicle for spreading our sport. When the Lions tour Australia and New Zealand they should start the test series in the Pacific Islands. That way they'd gain three fully blooded test matches, that would hugely influence the communities they play in. When they play South Africa they should look at playing Namibia. Fitting matches against Argentina and Japan would be ideal if they could although that's geographically complicated, still if either team was prepared to play a game in the home nation. The Lions could and should become a global event. The Test Series must remain the pinnacle but there should be more high profile stops along the
way.
Levelling criticism at Gatland seems odd. I'm no big fan of Gatland. But it probably boils down to the fact he always beats us. His Lions record is exemplary. In 2005 the Lions were at their lowest nadir. He was a big part of the 2009 rehabilitative tour. In 2013 they should have finished 3-0. But Australia were no mugs. A lot of their players went on to play in the final two years later. In 2017 they went to New Zealand and got a better result than many were predicting. Ifs and buts are fine in hindsight, but not many were predicting a Lions victory before the series and the bookies were predicting a whitewash. He did commit the cardinal sin of dropping BOD (probably my favourite player of all time, certainly my favourite non-Scottish player). I would not have done it. But then they won by quite a lot so he was probably vindicated. It was slightly suspect flying in Welsh journeymen in 2017 but then if he'd brought over key players from the other nations then he would be accused of not wanting to weaken the Welsh side. It also does not really matter in the grand scheme of things. Ideally the coach would be a home nations coach not coaching a home nations side. Which Gatland was the opposite of. However it's hard to think who else would have fitted the bill. Before Gatland Wales were a basket case so it's hard to see which Welsh coach could have stepped up. Similarly, the former Scotland coaches would have added to the underdog nature of the tour. A Frank Hadden-Matt Williams axis would have divided opinion as to whether the lions were dreadful or terrible. Eddie O'Sullivan would have added a soap opera element getting in ahead of Gatland, certainly on the basis of the 2007 world cup he had unique ideas of keeping a camp happy. Or perhaps Andy Robinson, Brian Ashton or Martin Johnson could have taken the reins. Maybe Gatland was the only option, the least worst option or the best of a bad bunch. If that's the case then he's done a pretty good job for the Lions where I'm sitting.

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Post by Cyril on Wed 08 Jan 2020, 11:03 pm

Problem being, NZ, Aus and SA would never agree to have the build up games against the other ‘local’ nations. It would also further dilute the idea of a tour against the SH sides.

NZ would play a game on the moon if they got all the money and it increased their brand (and the NH paid for the space flight, suits and oxygen) but they wouldn’t agree to this.

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Post by TJ on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 3:50 am

The british and irish lions are already dead.  Its just not dropped to the ground yet.

should have been rename the english welsh and irish south african and nz rejects lions with occasional token scots.  I will be glad when its gone completely and I hope all scots players refuse to be the token next time

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Post by maestegmafia on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 8:55 am

Well said Numbers

Thanks for taking the time to put your thoughts down. I am really looking forward to the next tour against the world Champions. Brings back memories of the 1997.

There were plenty of Scots on that tour and I am sure to see plenty on the next one.

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 9:19 am

TJ sit down.
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Post by Old Man on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 10:32 am

As a South African I like the British and Irish Lions tours. Long may it continue

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Post by maestegmafia on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 10:34 am

18 out of 26 for the lions to continue is pretty conclusive.

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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 11:25 am

Old Man wrote:As a South African I like the British and Irish Lions tours. Long may it continue

Why kill a cash cow for you guys and Aus, NZ.

Once again you're welcome. Wink
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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 11:29 am

Cyril wrote:Rodders is right though. It does make you wonder whether Gats also moonlighted as an agent for Welsh players and picked a whole swathe of them to try and put them in the shop window and take his filthy 10 percent?

Cynical, moi?

He picked them because they're the best performing nothern hemisphere team in rugby world cups and 6 nations since he took over. 4 6 nations titles, 3 grand slams, two world cup semi finals. And two 'successful' Lions tours.

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 11:59 am

The 4 Welsh players in the 'Geography 6' were Gareth Davies, Cory Hill, Kristian Dacey, and Tomas Francis. 3 of those are excellent shouts for the next Lions tour, one of them arguably as a test starter. What is the fuss all about? Only one player there was clearly not up to scratch, Dacey. And Allan Dell as well, who was Scottish. One third of Gatland's replacements were from the country he apparently hates.

It's a shame to see rugby 'fans' so easily led by the media tbh.

Joe Launchbury isn't as good as the media and man of the match voters think he is.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 12:25 pm

Jesus.

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Post by maestegmafia on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 12:30 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Jesus.

Not eligible unfortunately for various reasons.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 12:37 pm

Sorry that was in response to Wales being the best performing team and how that would then equate to lions selections. Theres too much to pick apart with that.

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Post by maestegmafia on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 12:39 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Sorry that was in response to Wales being the best performing team and how that would then equate to lions selections. Theres too much to pick apart with that.

Love to hear your perspective.

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:04 pm

maestegmafia wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Sorry that was in response to Wales being the best performing team and how that would then equate to lions selections. Theres too much to pick apart with that.

Love to hear your perspective.

I know I speak for everyone else when I say 'I wouldn't'.

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:29 pm

Can I just as a methodist lay preacher myself I am offended by the use of blasphemy. I try to overlook it in everyday life, because what can you do, the world just doesn't care anymore but I woud like to know what the forum's actual rules are around safeguarding against religious discrimination. Sorry for not knowing where else to post this but I did report the post in question and a moderator simply made a joke in response.

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Post by RiscaGame on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:36 pm

Site Rules

Points 4 and 5 are relevant to you, especially after saying you wouldn't like to read 71/2's point of view (could be construed as a catty personal attack).

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:38 pm

There's a big difference between a bit of banter and blasphemy

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:40 pm

"2) No racism, sexism, homophobic or otherwise vulgar language will be tolerated. The Admins do not care if it does not offend you and/or your friends. No bullying and/or discrimination will be tolerated, that includes: Race, Religion, Sex, Age, Cultural Background, Sexual Orientation. Use of foul language, discrimination and derogatory comments are not acceptable and are subject to Admin disciplinary action. It is up to the Admin to decide what is or is not acceptable in regards to defamation, discrimination and spamming."

I think that covers blasphemy. I know it's 'cool' to knock Christianity these days and a lot of people have forgotten the true meaning of God's Love, but at the very least blasphemous use of His name should be something everyone can avoid.

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Post by Tattie Scones RRN on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:41 pm

If you get offended by that, considering the real problems going on in the world right now, it might be best you join a different forum.

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Post by Guest on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:47 pm

I think the forum rules are perfectly clear. You might not understand why it is more than just 'offensive' to me a billions of people are the world and my heart breaks for those who are distant from God and don't see of feel Him, but I don't try and convert people or tell them they are 'wrong'.
"The Admins do not care if it does not offend you and/or your friends. No bullying and/or discrimination will be tolerated, that includes: Race, Religion, Sex, Age, Cultural Background, Sexual Orientation."

It is more than just offensive. You can call 'me' many names and I might be hurt by them, but taking the Lord's Name in vain is something deeply hurtful and not disconnected from the pain and suffering happening around the world at all.

I do not think this is the forum to discuss or have to defend religious belief. But I feel let down by the admis to be honest and have asked questions without receiving reply, so what can I do?

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Post by RDW on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 1:48 pm

guestalt_physicality wrote:I think the forum rules are perfectly clear. You might not understand why it is more than just 'offensive' to me a billions of people are the world and my heart breaks for those who are distant from God and don't see of feel Him, but I don't try and convert people or tell them they are 'wrong'.
"The Admins do not care if it does not offend you and/or your friends. No bullying and/or discrimination will be tolerated, that includes: Race, Religion, Sex, Age, Cultural Background, Sexual Orientation."

It is more than just offensive. You can call 'me' many names and I might be hurt by them, but taking the Lord's Name in vain is something deeply hurtful and not disconnected from the pain and suffering happening around the world at all.

I do not think this is the forum to discuss or have to defend religious belief. But I feel let down by the admis to be honest and have asked questions without receiving reply, so what can I do?
I'm just about to PM you - can you please leave this and let the thread get back to rugby

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Post by The Great Aukster on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 2:40 pm

maestegmafia wrote:Glad to see the larger majority of posters agree the lions should continue or continue with reform.

The sport has to evolve but some traditions are so fundamental to the history of the game they are important to cherish.

I have never heard of an Irish or British international who would the lions to end. It’s the pinnacle of our aspiration to make the team to be the best of the home nations and thus represent them on tour.

Currently:
41% are in favour of continuation
31% are in favour of cessation
27% are on the fence

A conditional "maybe" does not equate to "continue"? The exact 'change of setup' isn't stipulated so those on the fence may accept or reject whatever change is proposed. E.g. a change in set up making the tour only happen once every 20 years may allow one 'Maybe' to accept the Lions and another to reject them.

41% in favour of continuation is not a majority (nor indeed a 'larger majority').

The only existing tradition from the original Lions concept that perpetuates to this day is that of filling the three SH teams' coffers with money. Even that has changed as it used to be the local fans who stumped up the cash but now it's loadsamoney NH fans who have a spare £5k and a family-free fortnight to spend getting p1$$ed.

Regarding player aspiration, why would the Lions be the pinnacle when selection is not determined by form or ability but the capricious whim of a selector whom the player doesn't even know?

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Post by tigertattie on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 3:45 pm

You just need to look at the vote to see that actually it's not as straight forward as you'd hope.

OK, the vote is a bit loaded given that those that vote more than likely have quite an "extreme" view on the issue while more "moderate" viewing folk wont really bother.

The Lion's can not, should not and must not have a quota system while selecting players, but likewise the lions coach can not, should not and must not be a current serving 6ns coach or even one who has recently ended thier coaching role in the last season or two.

Sport is about winning these days, even the Lions count in that bracket. In my humblest of opinions, Woodward took his pals on a jolly as a thank you for getting him knighted, Gats took his players to give them big match experience vs the SH. Both tours equally as tainted for not picking the right players to go on the tour for the right reasons.
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Post by TightHEAD on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 3:58 pm

The Lions is not all about winning imho.

I really enjoyed the 2009 tour and less so the 2013 one (which Wales we won!)
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Post by Soul Requiem on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 4:15 pm

maestegmafia wrote:
No 7&1/2 wrote:Yeah fine. You think the fa cup winners are the best team in england and wales. I disagree. We move on.

A World Cup final in rugby is a bit more like a champions league win if you prefer to discuss this in soccer terms...!

Generally the team that wins the champions league pretty much all fans agree are the Best team in Europe...!

A rugby World Cup final is even more like a soccer World Cup with the winner basically being the best team.

It’s probably best to move on 7.5 because this really isn’t your finest analogy.

Quite often isn't the case, Real Madrid haven't been the best team in Europe for a long time hence the lack of league titles.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 4:51 pm

In response to you maes the 6 nations tournament is hardly set up to find te best team through its structure of playing teams home and away alternatively. Fluxation in team form or availability in selection also comes into it. Possible total wins comes more into play but still is hindered by who played in those teams rather than a simplistic view. Just as a start. It kind of goes over the very old ground of selections and some saying scotland dont deserve players due to the teams performances rather than getting down to a player level and looking at their form and skills. Theres alot more discussion there but frankly that'll do.

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Post by maestegmafia on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 4:56 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:In response to you maes the 6 nations tournament is hardly set up to find te best team through its structure of playing teams home and away alternatively. Fluxation in team form or availability in selection also comes into it. Possible total wins comes more into play but still is hindered by who played in those teams rather than a simplistic view. Just as a start. It kind of goes over the very old ground of selections and some saying scotland dont deserve players due to the teams performances rather than getting down to a player level and looking at their form and skills. Theres alot more discussion there but frankly that'll do.

That’s a very valid point 7.5

Over the years many players have been selected on club form rather than international and long should that continue, Jamie George being a recent player who was a test lion but had been number two for his country, Kyle Sinkler another and both shone and were grew as a result of the tour.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 5:01 pm

Think george has been steady since the lions with similar form to hartley had for us as a starter. Sinckler has really pushed on since his 1st international. For me hes vying at the top of the tree with furlongs as beat tight head.

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Post by Old Man on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 7:36 pm

TightHEAD wrote:
Old Man wrote:As a South African I like the British and Irish Lions tours. Long may it continue

Why kill a cash cow for you guys and Aus, NZ.

Once again you're welcome. Wink

Well if we are talking money, then it makes up for the revenue earned every November for the home unions and payment for some of those hordes of SA players in the Pro 14 and Premiership, eh?

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Post by Taylorman on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 8:15 pm

TightHEAD wrote:
Old Man wrote:As a South African I like the British and Irish Lions tours. Long may it continue

Why kill a cash cow for you guys and Aus, NZ.

Once again you're welcome. Wink

Thanks, NH is the cash cow for the entire game. Can't play it or coach it well enough so we supply the talent, you supply the cash. Works well dont ya think? thumbsup

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 8:33 pm

Ita just money attracts workers. If the money was down south youd see the opposite.

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Post by Taylorman on Thu 09 Jan 2020, 11:55 pm

You think? With ours not leaving there'd be so much competition for spots I doubt you'd get the same torrential flood this way that you have now.

It would just mean expanding the comp to more sides/ players which is what has happened up north- they wouldn't survive with the same teams without foreign players and coaches.

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Post by No 7&1/2 on Fri 10 Jan 2020, 7:26 am

That's a fair point in ration to the size of populations tbf. They wouldn't get enough supporters. Ratio wise it would be similar.

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Post by TJ on Fri 10 Jan 2020, 5:52 pm

guestalt_physicality wrote:Can I just as a methodist lay preacher myself I am offended by the use of blasphemy. I try to overlook it in everyday life, because what can you do, the world just doesn't care anymore but I woud like to know what the forum's actual rules are around safeguarding against religious discrimination. Sorry for not knowing where else to post this but I did report the post in question and a moderator simply made a joke in response.

this is in no way religious discrimination.  "taking the lords name in vain" is not discriminatory in any way.  You are attempting to censor others.

I find the religious attempting to dictate what others do because of their superstition extremely offensive.

I expect a ban for this but I will not be dictated to by anyone.

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Post by The Great Aukster on Sun 12 Jan 2020, 8:30 am

tigertattie wrote:You just need to look at the vote to see that actually it's not as straight forward as you'd hope.

OK, the vote is a bit loaded given that those that vote more than likely have quite an "extreme" view on the issue while more "moderate" viewing folk wont really bother.

The Lion's can not, should not and must not have a quota system while selecting players, but likewise the lions coach can not, should not and must not be a current serving 6ns coach or even one who has recently ended thier coaching role in the last season or two.

Sport is about winning these days, even the Lions count in that bracket. In my humblest of opinions, Woodward took his pals on a jolly as a thank you for getting him knighted, Gats took his players to give them big match experience vs the SH. Both tours equally as tainted for not picking the right players to go on the tour for the right reasons.

Having a coach that doesn't know the players but also doesn't have the time to get to know them is just another modern Lions paradox in an institution that is crumbling under the weight of them. The Lions tour is so short now that there is no opportunity for selection on merit during it, and selection for the squad is done on the whim of the head selector. When a bolter or second choice understudy who doesn't regularly play for his own Test side is picked to tour that is purely a selector's hunch. Sometimes selection is down to luck and expediency as for Tom Court, Shane Williams and the Geography Six.

There is no universal selection rule, and any method has arguably as much validity as the next. Clive Woodward created a template of picking a load of players from one nation because he knew they could play together. Arguably they could have been successful if he had picked more of them rather than less. Gatland has refined Woodward's model of selecting the core from one nation but picking established pods and partnerships rather than token individuals.

PT Barnum once said “The noblest art is that of making others happy”, and that's where the money is - appeasing the fans. As a rugby spectacle it doesn't really matter whether the Lions win or lose as long as the crowd's favourite giant, dwarf or bearded lady makes an appearance. Phineas Taylor Gatland knows his audience and loves the controversy of putting on this particular show, so who else is there (assuming Donald Trump is unavailable)?

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Post by mikey_dragon on Sun 12 Jan 2020, 6:27 pm

No 7&1/2 wrote:Ita just money attracts workers. If the money was down south youd see the opposite.

Yes, preach it to me o brother. Show me the money.

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Post by mikey_dragon on Sun 12 Jan 2020, 6:28 pm

Old Man wrote:
TightHEAD wrote:
Old Man wrote:As a South African I like the British and Irish Lions tours. Long may it continue

Why kill a cash cow for you guys and Aus, NZ.

Once again you're welcome. Wink

Well if we are talking money, then it makes up for the revenue earned every November for the home unions and payment for some of those hordes of SA players in the Pro 14 and Premiership, eh?

I think you meant Top 14.

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