Warburton to make up for lost time

Thu, 06 Jun 2013 13:21
Large sam warburton lions h s Large sam warburton lions media Large sam warburton b i lions tra Large sam warburton h s Large samwarburtonlionstraining

Skipper Sam Warburton says he will have to hit the ground running as he finally makes his tour debut for the B&I Lions against the Reds.

Skipper Sam Warburton says he will have to hit the ground running as he finally makes his tour debut for the British and Irish Lions against the Reds in Brisbane on Saturday.

The Welsh openside flank has overcome a knee injury which sidelined him from the Lions' opening two lopsided wins in the buildup to the June 22 first Test against the Wallabies in Brisbane.

The 24-year-old will be joined by compatriots Toby Faletau and Dan Lydiate in an-all Welsh back row trying to play its way into first Test selection.

His debut will make Warburton the 800th player to represent the Lions in their rich 125-year history.

Warburton said he needed quickly to hit form to secure his Test spot following outstanding performances by Justin Tipuric and Sean O'Brien in the No.7 jersey in the opening tour games.

"All the back row forwards have done exceptionally well, which makes selection very difficult," he said.

"I've been thinking about this game for quite a while, it can't come quick enough, and I'm desperate to get out on the pitch.

"It's been tough to watch the last two games knowing the players have got their jerseys in their kit bags to take home with them and I haven't got one yet.

"It's been the best three weeks of my rugby career since we've got together. I've absolutely loved it even though I haven't played."

Warburton will be one of six players to make their run-on tour debuts against the Reds, with prop Gethin Jenkins, English brothers Tom and Ben Youngs, prop Matt Stevens and lock Geoff Parling all getting their first starting chance.

The Reds, Super Rugby champions two years ago, are steeling themselves for a determined effort against the Lions. The tourists ran in 17 tries in their 59-8 and 69-17 victories over the Barbarians and Western Force, respectively.

Queensland coaching boss Ewen McKenzie has picked his strongest available side, and although the home side will be missing six Test stars they will still feature 12 capped Wallabies, including out-of-favour Wallaby fly-half Quade Cooper.

"[Cooper] is an outstanding player with great footwork and I'm sure he'll pose a different threat at 10 than what we've faced in the last two weeks," Warburton said.

"He'll definitely be an attacking threat and that's what you want to test your defence."

AFP

There are currently no matches being played
FIXTURE GMT VENUE
Fri, 27 April 2018
Hurricanes v Sunwolves 07h35 Wellington
Stormers v Rebels 13h00 Newlands
Leicester Tigers v Newcastle Falcons 18h45 Welford Road
Sat, 28 April 2018
Reds v Lions 05h05 Suncorp Stadium
Blues v Jaguares 07h35 Eden Park
Brumbies v Crusaders 09h45 Canberra
Kings v Cheetahs 13h00 Nelson Mandela Bay Stadium
Exeter Chiefs v Sale Sharks 14h00 Sandy Park
Worcester Warriors v Harlequins 14h00 Sixways
Gloucester v Bath 14h00 Kingsholm
Connacht v Leinster 14h05 Sportsground
Dragons v Scarlets 14h05 Rodney Parade
Bulls v Highlanders 15h15 Loftus Versfeld
Treviso v Zebre 16h00 Stadio Monigo
Cardiff Blues v Ospreys 16h35 Cardiff Arms Park
Munster v Ulster 16h35 Thomond Park
Edinburgh v Glasgow Warriors 18h35 Myreside
Sun, 29 April 2018
London Irish v Saracens 14h00 Madejski Stadium
Wasps v Northampton Saints 14h00 Ricoh Arena
RESULT SCORE
Sun, 22 April 2018
Racing Metro v Munster 27 | 22
Brumbies v Jaguares 20 | 25
Sat, 21 April 2018
Ulster v Glasgow Warriors 36 | 15
Zebre v Ospreys 37 | 14
Sharks v Stormers 24 | 17
Leinster v Scarlets 38 | 16
Bulls v Rebels 28 | 10
Reds v Chiefs 12 | 36
Crusaders v Sunwolves 33 | 11
Fri, 20 April 2018
Waratahs v Lions 0 | 29
Blues v Highlanders 16 | 34
Sun, 15 April 2018
Saracens v Bath 41 | 6
London Irish v Exeter Chiefs 5 | 45
Sat, 14 April 2018
Leinster v Treviso 15 | 17
Kings v Cardiff Blues 12 | 45
BRITISH & IRISH LIONS
MORE LOGS
Team P W D L Pts
B&I Lions 0 0 0 0 0
Australia 0 0 0 0 0
Barbarians 0 0 0 0 0
Force 0 0 0 0 0
Reds 0 0 0 0 0
Waratahs 0 0 0 0 0
Brumbies 0 0 0 0 0
Rebels 0 0 0 0 0
NSW-Queensland 0 0 0 0 0
Blues 0 0 0 0 0
Highlanders 0 0 0 0 0
Hurricanes 0 0 0 0 0
Crusaders 0 0 0 0 0
Chiefs 0 0 0 0 0
NZ Barbarians 0 0 0 0 0
Maori All Blacks 0 0 0 0 0
New Zealand 0 0 0 0 0