It is now just about 8 weeks before the first test between the All Blacks and The British and Irish Lions at Eden Park in Auckland (June 24th)
The number of key injured players from both squads is growing and was increased over the weekend by the addition of Kieran Read (broken thumb) and Courtney Lawes (HIA).
There are always players who miss out on big tours but the list at the moment seems longer than any I can remember this close to the first test –
Alun Wyn Jones
Hopefully all of these will recover in time to be fit before 24th June (especially the Lions, obviously)
For some it may well be a useful rest before the tour, for others a race to get match time ahead of the tests. Not forgetting that other squad players face big games before the Lions set off – league, cup and play-offs and for the All Blacks Super Rugby, a warm-up game and for some (Crusaders and Blues ABs) a game against the Lions.
Much to concern both Warren Gatland and Steve Hansen long before the start of the tour.
Arguably Hansen is slightly better off as Super Rugby takes a break from the day of the first Lions match until after the final test.