Categories
Featured

The British and Irish Lions 2025 Tour Preview

The British and Irish Lions Tour to Australia is set to be an exciting spectacle in the world of rugby. With the tour dates and fixtures announced for 2025, and speculation about potential captains doing the rounds, fans are eagerly awaiting the action.

That’s where we come in! At The Full 80, we’ve got you covered with all the details on the Tour Dates, Fixtures, potential captains, and our top 3 players who we reckon will steal the show in 2025.

So, without further ado, let’s dive in!

Skip To:

#1. What is the British & Irish Lions Tour?

#2. Tour Dates & Fixtures

#3. Candidates for Captaincy

#4. Our Top 3 Player Picks for 2025

What is the British & Irish Lions Tour all about?

Regarded as one of the most prestigious events in World Rugby, the British and Irish Lions Tour takes place every four years and consists of the best players eligible to represent England, Ireland, Scotland or Wales.

The tour takes a round-robin path through Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa. The Lions engage in a series of thrilling matches against the host nation’s teams, culminating in a riveting three-match test series that draws over 40,000 spectators from around the world.

But what’s the point?

The purpose is to not only foster sporting excellence and competition, but also to promote camaraderie and rervered love for the game amongst the rugby playing nations, presenting a unique opportuntiy for players from four different nations to come together as one team, representing the best of British & Irish rugby.

Now, as the tour marks its return to Australia after a 12-year hiatus, a burning question looms: Can the hosts rise to the occasion?

Time holds the answer to this suspense, but for now, onto the Tour Dates & Fixtures!

Tour Dates & Fixtures

In antcipation of the upcoming summer tour, the British & Irish Lions have released a nine-match schedule for the 2025 Tour to Australia. The eagerly awaited Test clashes will take place on 19 July, 26 July, and 2 August.

Optus Stadium, Burswood, Australia

Here’s a look at the full schedule:

  • 28 June: Lions vs Western Force, Perth (Optus Stadium)
  • 2 July: Lions vs Queensland Reds, Brisbane (Suncorp Stadium)
  • 5 July: Lions vs NSW Waratahs, Sydney (Allianz Stadium)
  • 9 July: Lions vs ACT Brumbies, Canberra (GIO Stadium)
  • 12 July: Lions vs Invitational AU & NZ, Adelaide (Adelaide Oval)
  • 19 July: 1st Test, Lions vs Wallabies, Brisbane (Suncorp Stadium)
  • 22 July: Lions vs Melbourne Rebels, Melbourne (Marvel Stadium)
  • 26 July: 2nd Test, Lions vs Wallabies, Melbourne (Melbourne Cricket Ground/MCG)
  • 2 August: 3rd Test, Lions vs Wallabies, Sydney (Accor Stadium)

The Lions will traverse Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney for the Test matches, initiating the tour in Perth against the Western Force before encountering other Australian Super Rugby Pacific sides.

Potential Candidates for Captaincy

Shifting focus to leadership, the race for the captaincy of the 2025 Lions team is shaping up to be one of the most hotly contested in years. Several potential candidates have emerged:

  • James Ryan: The Leinster co-captain is the current frontrunner according to bookmakers. He boasts a track record of captaining every team he’s been a part of since his school days.
  • Maro Itoje: Recognized as one of Europe’s premier locks in recent seasons, Itoje showcased a return to his disruptive best during the World Cup.
  • Jac Morgan: A natural leader, Morgan demonstrated his captaincy prowess by co-leading Wales during the recent World Cup.

These individuals have showcased exceptional leadership qualities and are considered prime contenders to lead the Lions on the upcoming tour.

Our Top 3 Player Picks for 2025

Now we’ve selected our captains, it’s on to the players! After all, what would the Tour be without them?

Ben Earl (England)

A formidable force at the breakdown, possessing a remarkable ability to secure possession through turnovers and bolstered by his exceptional pace capable of piercing through defensive lines, Ben Earl stands as a beloved figure among fans, making a strong case for inclusion in the British & Irish Lions squad for 2025.

With an impressive track record of 165 appearances, totaling 9702 minutes played, 118 victories, and 230 points scored throughout his career, Earl emerges as a formidable contender.

In the recent 2024 season, Earl showcased his prowess by making 73 carries in the Six Nations, surpassing all other participants in the tournament.

Despite England finishing third, his stellar performance earned him accolades, being hailed as the tournament’s best player by former Scotland captain John Barclay and Wales captain Sam Warburton.

Furthermore, his contributions in the Premiership season were equally remarkable, featuring in 23 league matches, including 20 starts, and leading the Premiership’s tackle count with an impressive 331 tackles while notching up eight tries.

Acknowledged as an exceptional talent both at the club level with Saracens and on the international stage with the England squad, Earl’s chances of selection are promising.

Finn Russell (Scotland)

Finn Russell, a fly-half of unparalleled skill, has been a cornerstone of Scotland’s ascension in the 2024 Six Nations.

His strategic acumen and ability to unlock Scotland’s potential led to Duhan van der Merwe’s hat-trick against England, propelling Scotland to a 30-21 triumph. This victory marked the fourth consecutive Calcutta Cup win for Scotland, a feat not seen in 128 years.

With a career spanning 246 appearances as a Fly-Half, Russell has amassed an impressive tally of 382 points for Scotland and 118 for Bath Rugby. His conversion record is equally commendable, with 90 for Scotland and 29 for Bath Rugby.

Russell’s participation in the 2021 Lions Tour was a game-changer. Stepping in for an injured Dan Biggar, he injected pace into the game with his floated passes, moving the Lions into the outside channels where they aimed to attack. His style of play brought a refreshing change to the game, and we eagerly anticipate his future contributions.

Just like Ben Earl, Finn Russell stands as a beacon of talent and potential, making waves both at the club level with Bath Rugby and on the international stage with the Scotland squad. His selection prospects look promising, and his fans eagerly await his next move.

Dan Sheehan (Ireland)

At just 25 years old, Dan Sheehan has emerged as a force to be reckoned with in the world of rugby. His impressive performances and achievements have made him a fan-favourite for the upcoming British & Irish Lions Tour for 2025.

As a hooker for Leinster and the Ireland national team, Sheehan has been instrumental in the team’s success. In 2023, he played a key role in helping Ireland secure their fourth ever Grand Slam in the Six Nations Championships.

His performance was particularly notable in the match against England, where he scored two tries and was awarded the player of the match.

Sheehan’s momentum didn’t stop there. In 2024, he continued to impress both fans and critics alike. He was a key player in Ireland’s bid for back-to-back Grand Slam titles in the Six Nations Championships. His contribution was significant in the wins over France and Italy, where he scored three tries.

His performance led him to become the leading try scorer after the first two rounds of the Six Nations. His exceptional skills and contribution to the sport were recognized when he was selected in the 2024 Guinness Men’s Six Nations Team of the Championship.

In the same year, Sheehan signed a two-year contract extension with Leinster and the Irish Rugby Football Union, solidifying his commitment to the sport and setting the stage for more impressive performances in the future.

Given his recent achievements and consistent performance, Dan Sheehan is undoubtedly a top pick for the upcoming British & Irish Lions Tour for 2025. His skills, determination, and contribution to the sport have certainly made him a player to watch out for.

Who’s in your Squad?

Let us know in the comments who you feel should make the cut for the British & Irish Lions Squad.

We’d love to hear from you!

In the meantime, be sure to stay in the loop with the latest Rugby News, Guides & Boot Launches right here at The Full 80 – where rugby lives!

By Peter Wakeford

Just your everyday grassroots guru. I'm here to sprinkle some sportsy magic on your day with the latest boot drops, guides, news, and a dash of quirky humor. Let's lace up and have a laugh on this sporting adventure!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *