Trip Advisors

The rugby pages, web sites and pundits have spent much of the time since Sunday selecting their Lions starting XVs based on the three 6 Nations games at the weekend.

The various teams chosen are inevitably dominated by Scotland and Wales, although Ireland had several players included, despite losing.

England fared particularly badly with only Owen Farrell making the cut – and then not in all the teams selected.

This in complete contrast to the many Lions sides suggested over the last 6 months, where Ireland and England had the majority of those included in the proposed starting XV.

Of course all these made up teams over the last year are simply page fillers and serve simply as pub debates.

The fact is that Warren Gatland and his coaching team are the only ones who will be in charge of selecting the final squad – and they will not finalise this until after the final round of the 6 Nations in March.

They will not only want to see how the tournament pans out but to look at injured players who have yet to return – guys like Johnny Sexton, Taulupe Faletau and Mako Vunipola.

The press and pundits XVs are likely to change each week over the next rounds with Wales or England increasing their contingent on Monday, depending on the result and display in Cardiff.

The time to take notice will be when the injury assessment and performances are completed. Even then the Premiership and Pro 12 finals may have injury casualties – the week before the tour kicks off.

Until then the pub debates will continue.


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