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Is the 2021 Lions Tour Doomed?

munstermuffin

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Seems it is now being said.play in UK or wait 12 years. Cost of altering already agreed tours next year means 2022 is not an option
 

TommiG88

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I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s in the U.K. with crowds. The point of the vaccine is initially to protect the vulnerable, and by protecting the vulnerable you protect the NHS. It’s never going to be eradicated, like the common flu hasn’t been eradicated.
Once the vulnerable are protect, and if let’s say that’s done by May, what is stopping the games being played with crowds?
 

ncurd

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I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s in the U.K. with crowds. The point of the vaccine is initially to protect the vulnerable, and by protecting the vulnerable you protect the NHS. It’s never going to be eradicated, like the common flu hasn’t been eradicated.
Once the vulnerable are protect, and if let’s say that’s done by May, what is stopping the games being played with crowds?
Look up the list of associated 'underlying conditions' for under 60's that count towards death statistics huge swathes of the population actually have them just note acute thing like stuff which means they are on immunosuppressents. Then as noted previously look at actual vaccine rates against required rates. I can see small spaced out crowds happening like we've had but full stadiums aren't going to happen until the latter part of this year at the earliest.

The reality is the amount of population needed to be vaccinated by then probably won't be.
 

Tallshort

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Either the Unions reschedule 2022 to include a Lions tour or we just bin it.

Its only a chuffing sports event, its not worth the bloody risk. Look at what happened last March with the Cheltenham festival, nearly wiped out the cabinet all for the sake of a bit of horse racing.

Its really not that important and I say that as someone who has avidly watched the Lions since 93 and hopes to go to Aus in 2025.
 

TRF_Olyy

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Either the Unions reschedule 2022 to include a Lions tour or we just bin it.
That's what I think too - Lions tour in the UK vs an, inevitably, weakened Boks side - and with no mid-week/club games?
Nah
 

munstermuffin

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Either the Unions reschedule 2022 to include a Lions tour or we just bin it.

Its only a chuffing sports event, its not worth the bloody risk. Look at what happened last March with the Cheltenham festival, nearly wiped out the cabinet all for the sake of a bit of horse racing.

Its really not that important and I say that as someone who has avidly watched the Lions since 93 and hopes to go to Aus in 2025.
Issue is Unions have checked this options. For Ireland to cancel NZ tour will cost them a lot more than Lions tour will reimburse.
 

Tallshort

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Issue is Unions have checked this options. For Ireland to cancel NZ tour will cost them a lot more than Lions tour will reimburse.
Fine they bin it then
 

Oliver Madden

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I don’t know if I like the idea of the series being played in the UK, to me it would take away the uniqueness element that makes the Lions so special. Do you just bin it until 2025?. I can’t see the SARU agreeing to that, they will have made plans for the next few years on the assumption of a massive economic boost from the Lions tour so cancelling it would be unpalatable to them. There’s not an easy solution here. Just my view but I would be very happy for the summer tours next year to be canned and for the Lions tour to happen instead. Unfortunately though I think the best chance of the series happening is in the UK this summer. I hope not.
 

Groundhog

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Having games in Ireland and Britain is a decent option I think, provided the virus is in check in these parts by then, which is a big if. You would presumably cut out the midweeks which I always enjoy, but it beats having nothing. Also have to wonder how you divide 3 tests among 4 nations. 4 tests is another option I suppose.

I don't see the tour taking place in S.A if we're being honest.
 

mdaclarke

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Having games in Ireland and Britain is a decent option I think, provided the virus is in check in these parts by then, which is a big if. You would presumably cut out the midweeks which I always enjoy, but it beats having nothing. Also have to wonder how you divide 3 tests among 4 nations. 4 tests is another option I suppose.

I don't see the tour taking place in S.A if we're being honest.

If the Boks manage to win a Reverse Lions Tour in the UK they will go down in history
 

Kiwiwomble

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It will be a big call for SA to sacrifice altitude and have to do the travelling etc as well as the obvious benefit to their economy
 

munstermuffin

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Fine they bin it then
I suppose then you sacrifice money to Canterbury and TV etc too. It is a catch 22. But agree that it looks like binning it is most likely with UK option 2nd o Salvage any chance of breaking even.
 

The Alpha Bro

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If the Boks manage to win a Reverse Lions Tour in the UK they will go down in history
Meh... It's definitely easier to beat the Lions than it is to beat the strongest Lions' nation at the time. It's more likely that this tour is quickly forgotten like all covid affected rugby tournaments so far.
 

TRF_Olyy

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Meh... It's definitely easier to beat the Lions than it is to beat the strongest Lions' nation at the time. It's more likely that this tour is quickly forgotten like all covid affected rugby tournaments so far.
Aye Lions are rarely the sum of their parts,
Considering the home nations are very up and down atm, and will be coached by someone the players actively dislike, I'd say the world champions would be favourites.
 

Jimcardiff

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I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s in the U.K. with crowds. The point of the vaccine is initially to protect the vulnerable, and by protecting the vulnerable you protect the NHS. It’s never going to be eradicated, like the common flu hasn’t been eradicated.
Once the vulnerable are protect, and if let’s say that’s done by May, what is stopping the games being played with crowds?
I still do not think any sort of tour will go ahead ,cut the losses and abandon it I think is the best choice.
 

TRF_heineken

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Is there a deadline for these doomsday scenario's?

Yeah this new strain is spreading. I just came out of self-isolation after my wife tested positive.

But I don't think the UK is getting the full picture of the situation here in SA.

Currently, the hotspots are in areas where the majority of the Lions tour won't be happening...

I do however fear that we might follow the UK's example and go back into a 6-week hard lockdown, to try and curb this new strain. While we wait for the vaccines.

Speaking of Vaccines, we missed the December deadline to be one of the first countries to get the Pfizer vaccine.

Although our Government is saying that we will be getting a vaccine soon, although they are not very clear as to when, and which vaccine it will be.
 

RedruthRFC

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Mid February has been talked about as a date for a decision.

I'm sure you're right that the UK doesn't have a full picture of the situation in SA. Given current testing levels, does South Africa? What's the current positive test percentage? This seems a more indicative metric when testing rates are at a low level. Unless you're pro-covid, I wouldn't fear a lockdown. I fear that we went into our current one too late and will come out of it too early. I would be much more afraid of a government who place their own popularity over doing the best thing for public health and the economy.

As far as I can see, the Covid situation in SA is an irrelevance though. The SARU have said that they don't see the tour as viable if matches are played behind closed doors. In a country on a steep upward curve, without a vaccination programme in place, there's more chance of porcine aviation that full rugby stadia in the time frame we're talking about. As I've said further up the thread, either the SARU are confident that they can strong arm the other stake holders into doing what they want or have been very naive in making the statement that they did. It strikes me that they're running the risk of turning down 50% of something in the pursuit of a greater percentage of what they were expecting in the first place.
 

munstermuffin

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Lads be sure money will drive this more than anything. I wonder what the finances are for TV as there was a fear this would be competing with soccer tournaments deffered from last year and could be iffy territory.
 

RedruthRFC

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Lads be sure money will drive this more than anything. I wonder what the finances are for TV as there was a fear this would be competing with soccer tournaments deffered from last year and could be iffy territory.
Preach. In Covid UK, "follow the money" is a popular phrase and I believe it is applicable here. As far as I'm concerned, whichever the country, large live crowds are highly unlikely, so either the TV companies are prepared to stump up enough cash to make playing a series behind closed doors profitable or they're not. I would have thought that it would be, so the fact that this doesn't appear to be being considered means that either I'm underestimating the costs of putting such a series wrong or that (IMO) people are wildly overestimating what will be possible a few months down the line.

As a hedge, I would plan a fully bubbled series in Ireland, given that there's the best chance of having some sort of crowd there. Other than adding to the cost, making it more difficult to form an effective bubble and massaging a few egos, I don't see what's to be gained by moving it around in any case.
 

The Alpha Bro

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As a hedge, I would plan a fully bubbled series in Ireland, given that there's the best chance of having some sort of crowd there. Other than adding to the cost, making it more difficult to form an effective bubble and massaging a few egos, I don't see what's to be gained by moving it around in any case.
Don't think there's any hope of our gov. signing off on that really. Far too many fans would come through Belfast.
 

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