Lions Tour: 5 players to watch

Sam Warburton has recovered from his knee injury and will captain the British and Irish Lions in their opening match against the Provincial Barbarians on Saturday.

The 28-year-old Welsh flank will start alongside three national captains - Wales' Alun Wyn Jones, Ireland's Rory Best and Scotland's Greig Laidlaw.

Chief among the players who will understand the need to make a strong early impression is Johnny Sexton, who starts in the 10 shirt on Saturday but knows he is under pressure from Owen Farrell.

'I think we've got some players at the moment who aren't known here, but they've got some X-factor, ' he said.

Central to that will be Bryn Gatland, Warren's son and the Barbarians' fly-half; but this is not a selection based on sentiment.

"Once every 12 years means, really, that you'll play them once in your career - so it's a very special time", Read said. They don't get pushed around at scrum time, they don't get messed around at the lineout, they're ball-carriers, their work rate is good, they tackle, they're on their feet, back in the game and doing the right things.

Northland's Josh Goodue says he's used to the little guy tag - and his new teammates know how to use it.

Each of the five Super Rugby teams gets a crack at the Lions.

"I spoke to him last night and he's been enjoying the week".

"With no tickets left on public sale for the Crusaders match or the three tests, and at least as many worldwide visitors expected as in 2005, this year's series will again be a remarkable economic boost for New Zealand".

"Obviously the whole focus is on the test matches but having been involved in 2013 and having spoken to people in the's about giving everyone an opportunity and keeping harmony in the squad", Gatland said.

"We recognise it's going to be a hard game but we have plenty to play for and the boys can't wait to get out there. You are always a bit nervous of I'm really pleased to be involved in the first one". After cramming a game plan into just seven days, forging an understanding between his group of players over a handful of training sessions, the British & Irish Lions' first opponents will take to the field looking to entertain.

Welshman Sam Warburton is a rugby player with a physical and emotional presence far greater than his 6-foot-2, 227-pound frame.

They will kick off a 10-match tour with a match against the Provincial Barbarians in Whangarei on Saturday. "Given the limited preparation time we have and other challenges we've faced, it would be ludicrous of us to fight fire with fire".

Replacements: 16-Andrew Makalio, 17-Tolu Fahamokoia, 18-Marcel Renata, 19-Matt Matich, 20-Peter Rowe, 21-Richard Judd, 22-Jonah Lowe, 23-Junior Ngaluafe.

Related news:

Hot News

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top NASA spacecraft will aim straight for sun next year
Jun 03, 2017 - 07:32
Dr Eugene Parker was presented with the first scale model of Parker Solar Probe during the Nasa announcement . For the first time , NASA has made plans to launch a spacecraft that will travel to the sun's atmosphere.

3 ex-Penn State officials sent to jail in Sandusky scandal
Jun 03, 2017 - 07:31
Spanier went to trial and was convicted , while Schultz and Curley pleaded guilty to a child endangerment charge in March. But in documents filed on the eve of the sentencing, they assailed the two men over their testimony at Spanier's trial.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top YouTube cracks down on 'hateful' content
Jun 03, 2017 - 07:28
After facing a significant backlash from a variety of advertisers, YouTube has finally toughened its content guidelines. To some, this may be considered a form of censorship as the firm is hitting where it hurts the most - the bank balance.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Microsoft set to drop support for classic Windows Phone apps
Jun 03, 2017 - 07:26
"The build is believed to be available to Windows Insiders in the Fast, Slow, and Release Preview rings", Hassan wrote. Microsoft has said that its analysis shows only a small portion of Insiders got these builds.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Argentina Confirms Sampaoli As New Coach
Jun 03, 2017 - 07:24
The fulfilling of a dream that I've craved for a long time. "I spoke to him and he is very excited". Argentina sacked Edgardo Bauza in April after eight matches as coach, BBC reports.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Browns trade LB Demario Davis to Jets for DB Calvin Pryor
Jun 02, 2017 - 10:48
The Jets spent the off-season making it obvious that they were ready to move on from former first-round pick Calvin Pryor . Davis, 28, left the Jets last year as a free agent by signing a two-year, $8 million contract with the Browns.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top President Trump calls for unity against terrorism
Jun 02, 2017 - 10:47
He said among Iran's destabilising interventions was in Syria, where President Bashar al Assad has "committed unspeakable crimes". Much of the summit's focus is on countering the perceived threat posed by the Shiite-led Iranian government.

Kelly defends plan for Russia back channel as a 'good thing'
Jun 02, 2017 - 10:47
Well, another thing we're going to be asking a lot of questions about going forward is the big Paris climate agreement. The person wasn't authorized to publicly discuss private policy deliberations and insisted on anonymity.

Dashcam video released from Tiger Woods' DUI arrest
Jun 02, 2017 - 10:45
Woods told an officer he was taking a prescribed medication, the specific medication, however, was redacted in the police report . Woods, wearing a long-sleeved white shirt, dark shorts and a golf cap, was told by police that he did not have to walk anywhere.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Trade tops agenda as Trump hosts Vietnamese leader
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:55
Vice President of AmCham Michael Kelly told Dau tu reporters that the U.S. business community is much awaiting the PM's visit. The Obama administration made the Trans-Pacific Partnership a priority in part to counter China's economic leverage in Asia.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top French Open to start with Petra Kvitova's return to court
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:54
And there will be a big part of Petra Kvitova that will be annoyed by the manner of her defeat at the French Open on Wednesday. Rafael Nadal was all smiles after defeating Robin Haase 6-1, 6-4, 6-3 on the same court where he won nine French Open titles.

Apple Preps for Fast 2017 MacBook Pro Release Date
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:53
In terms of design, Apple's upcoming MacBook Pro 2017 is expected to be thinner and sleeker compared to its predecessors. The latter is considered the most affordable device from Apple and unsurprisingly, its sales are consistently strong.

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top Here's The Heartbreaking Letter A Portland Victim's Mom Wrote To Trump
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:49
The lone surviving victim of a triple stabbing aboard a Portland light-rail train has been released from the hospital. About a dozen protesters in the hall outside the courtroom erupted into shouting while the charges were read .

isis-killer-beheading-video-story-top In contrasting fashion, Djokovic, Muguruza advance in Paris
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:48
Men's second seed Novak Djokovic took down Joao Sousa while women's fourth seed Garbine Muguruza bested Anett Kontaveit. The victor of 23 Grand Slam singles titles is not playing for the rest of this season because she is pregnant.

Canada's Ontario province plans to raise minimum wage to C$15
Jun 01, 2017 - 01:43
The increase to minimum wage will be phased in over the next 18 months, rising to $14 per hour on January 1, 2018. Alberta's NDP government has announced a $15.00 minimum wage would take effect in October 2018.