Despite threats from Covid-19, the British & Irish Lions Tour in South Africa is scheduled to take place on July 3.
The tour was reduced to eight games, plus a June 26 pre-tour game against Japan which saw the Lions start their campaign on a level playing field with a 28-10 victory. But the Lions will be without their talismanic captain Alun Wyn Jones, who was kicked out of the tour after injuring his shoulder just eight minutes into the game against Japan and Justin Tipuric. Conor Murray has been named Jones’ alternate captain.
Ahead of the Test Series, the Lions will face the Emirates Lions, Cell C Sharks, Vodacom Bulls, South Africa ‘A’ and DHL Stormers.
The first Test against South Africa takes place on July 3, against the Lions, with the final Test on August 7.
While Sky Sports owns the exclusive live streaming rights, live coverage of the Lions Tour will also be shown on terrestrial television.
For the first time in nearly 30 years, Channel 4 will broadcast highlights from the three test matches against South Africa. Highlights from all Lions Tour matches will also be available through its video-on-demand service, All4.
Talksport radio will also provide live commentary on the nine matches, with World Cup winners Bryan Habana (South Africa) and Ben Kay (England), former Irish and Lions winger Tommy Bowe and former rugby player and Lions coach Sir Ian McGeechan weighing in on every game.
The full tour schedule, including details of kick off times and how to watch UK matches, is shown below.
Sky Sports reveal commentary team for Lions tour
by Charlie Morgan
Sky Sports will dedicate a channel to 24-hour coverage of the British and Irish Lions’ tour of South Africa with former Irish opening half Ronan O’Gara and retired international referee Nigel Owens among their squad experts.
Sky Sports Action will be renamed Sky Sports The Lions on July 17, ahead of the tourists’ match against DHL Stormers in Cape Town, and will remain in place until August 10, three days after the end of the Test Series.
Prior to that, barring a schedule change, viewers will be able to watch Lions matches against Emirates Lions (July 3), Cell C Sharks (July 7), Vodacom Bulls (July 10) and South Africa A (July 14) on Sky Sports. Action and Sky Sports Main Event.
Alex Payne is expected to lead the coverage, which will include a large roster of analysts. O’Gara, fresh out of a season in which his La Rochelle team were runner-up to Toulouse in both the European Champions Cup and Top 14, and Owens are new faces.
O’Gara is also a veteran of three Lions tours, the last of which was to South Africa in 2009. Sam Warburton, skipper of the 2017 New Zealand tour, will be in the studio with former England rower Maggie Alphonsi.
Besides Alphonsi, Sir Ian McGeechan and Will Greenwood make them three Telegraph Rugby columnists involved. Scott Quinnell will travel across the UK to speak to Lions supporters.
Sarra Elgan and Bryan Habana are scheduled to report from South Africa and, in Miles Harrison’s absence, Conor McNamara will be Sky Sports’ senior commentator. The behind-the-scenes tour will also be the first in the professional era not to feature Stuart Barnes.
In addition to exclusive live match coverage, Sky Sports The Lions will feature highlights, documentaries and archival footage as well as a Lions Show breakfast on Sunday morning that will recap the events of the day before and discuss the coverage. tour media.
Finally, Sky Sports customers will have access to Chasing the sun, an acclaimed five-part documentary that details South Africa’s journey to World Cup glory in 2019.
British and Irish Lions TV Channel Schedule 2021
Saturday 26 June 2021
British and Irish Lions 28 – 10 Japan
Saturday July 3, 2021
British & Irish Lions v Sigma Lions – Johannesburg (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
Wednesday July 7, 2021
British & Irish Lions vs Sharks – Johannesburg (6pm, Sky Sports)
Saturday July 10, 2021
British & Irish Lions v Bulls – Pretoria (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
Wednesday, July 14, 2021
British & Irish Lions v South Africa ‘A’ – Cape Town (7pm, Sky Sports)
Saturday July 17, 2021
British & Irish Lions vs Stormers – Cape Town (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
Saturday, July 24, 2021
1st test against South Africa – Cape Town (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
Saturday, July 31, 2021
2nd Test against South Africa – Cape Town (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
Saturday, August 7, 2021
3rd Test v South Africa – Johannesburg (5 p.m., Sky Sports)
All play times are BST