British & Irish Lions to explore potential women's team

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SA Rugby has been lobbying government for months for the right to have fans attend the Springboks’ three test matches against the British & Irish Lions. Photo: Getty
SA Rugby has been lobbying government for months for the right to have fans attend the Springboks’ three test matches against the British & Irish Lions. Photo: Getty

The British & Irish Lions have set up a feasibility group led by former Lions star Ieuan Evans to explore the possibility of setting up a women's team.

Lions tours bring together the best male players from England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland to face New Zealand, Australia and South Africa every four years but there is no women's equivalent.

Former Wales winger Evans, a veteran of three Lions tours, will chair a 13-strong steering group including rugby administrators, business leaders, coaches and players.

Evans said the women's game was experiencing "unprecedented growth around the world".

"A women's Lions team is a big opportunity for the women's game, and I am looking forward to working with the steering group to assess its viability," he said in a statement on Tuesday.

Lions managing director Ben Calveley said: "A women's Lions team is a huge opportunity, but there are a number of challenges to consider when looking to create a successful women's set-up.

"Financial viability, suitable opposition and appropriate scheduling in the women's rugby calendar will need rigorous analysis, research and careful consideration."

The British & Irish Lions men's team lost their most recent series 2-1 to the Springboks earlier in the year.

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