Friday, July 05, 2013

Lions tour dying a death

reproduced from Fergal Cantwell’s blog with permission from author

Rugby Opinion

Is it time to liven up the Lions tour?

Change is always frowned upon, when it comes to tradition but maybe we have arrived at a situation where change is needed. The Lions tour still generates huge interest but it’s not the animal that it used to be. Wouldn’t it be interesting to play this game in a Ryder Cup format? The best of the Northern Hemisphere versus the best of the Southern. A bi-annual series with home advantage switching between north and south.

How European rugby followers would love to see this. The Lions tour goes to Australia, New Zealand and South Africa. Wouldn’t it be fantastic for fans that will never be able to travel to support the Lions, to know that every second year, they would be playing either in their country or very close to home. What a boost to rugby in the country that is honoured with hosting the test series.

Two panels picked from the best of the north versus the best of the south, a mouth watering prospect. The likes of Parisse from Italy and any other European that isn’t British or Irish would be biting at the bit to get involved in something like this. What a sight to see a team made up of South Africans, Aussies, All Blacks, Fijians and the other Islanders and of course Argentinians.

Of course this will never happen, tradition is tradition and in rugby, tradition weighs a bit more than in other sports. It is however an interesting debate, the pros far out weigh the cons and the prospect of two such sides meeting is far more than just appealing. The Ryder Cup has that bite in it that is hard to explain. A rugby version of this could be an event to be envied by all other sports. The European Lions, it maybe a dream, but what a dream it would be.

Fergal Cantwell is from Kilkenny, he mostly writes on sports and humour and sometimes tries to mix both. He likes to stir up talking points to get the views of others into the mix. He doesn't write matter of factly and is open to correction, his blog is opinion based and as such, welcomes the opinions of others. You can follow him on twitter @fergalcantwell and his blog page is


Taken by JLP from RDS press box on Nov 16, 2019