Wilkinson’s Lions dream
Wilkinson’s Lions dreamSHARE
Former England flyhalf Jonny Wilkinson is eyeing one last tour with the British and Irish Lions.
The World Cup-winning flyhalf, who retired from Test rugby last December, said it would be an honour to undertake a third tour with the British and Irish Lions to Australia next June.
"There's no way I could say no," Wilkinson said.
"In terms of what that represents, everything about it, it's enormous. Such a fabulous thing.
"The joy is the fact it doesn't have to come with [still playing] international rugby. It doesn't matter where you come from. You have got six weeks, get your boots on and get into it."
Wilkinson admits he longs for an elusive British and Irish Lions tour triumph after the tours of Australia in 2001 and New Zealand in 2005 ended in defeat.
"It is niggling away at me," he said.
"All I can do is play and see if I fit into those plans. If I don't, I'll make the best of what I've got [in France] which, let's face it, is good enough."
Warren Gatland, after being announced as Lions coach in September, hinted that Wilkinson could make the touring party.
"Wilkinson's still a fine player and only 33. That's not old,” Gatland said.
"No one is ruled out or pencilled in. If you are playing well enough, then whoever it is – whether it is Jonny Wilkinson or whoever, it's all about how players are performing for their clubs or countries."