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Biggar and Lawes in for Lions opener

Northampton Saints duo Dan Biggar and Courtney Lawes have been named in the British and Irish Lions' matchday squad for their opening clash against Japan in the 1888 Cup this Saturday (kick-off: 3pm). 

The pair – who were named in Warren Gatland's squad for the tour of South Africa last month – embark on their second outing with the touring side, having both earned Lions caps in 2017 on the New Zealand tour, and will begin their campaign against Japan at BT Murrayfield this weekend (live on Channel 4). 

Saints' fly-half Biggar will earn his sixth cap as he starts the opening clash of the summer tour of South Africa, while Lawes begins Saturday's match on the bench.  

Lions head coach, Gatland said: “I’m pleased with the progress we’ve made during our training camp in Jersey so far, but we’ve a long way to go. You can see that the squad are starting to get to grips with our game strategies, but, as always with a Lions Tour, this takes time to bed in.

“We’re in a good place though and I can tell there’s a lot more to come from this group.

“Everyone in the squad will get a start before the start of the Test Series, so each member of the squad can put their hand up for Test selection.

“We are absolutely delighted to be playing in front of sixteen thousand supporters in Edinburgh. I’m sure the crowd will give the players an enormous lift before we depart for South Africa on Sunday.”

BRITISH & IRISH LIONS vs JAPAN
Saturday 26 June, 2021
BT Murrayfield
Kick-off: 3pm

15 Liam Williams (Scarlets, Wales) #833
14 Josh Adams (Cardiff Rugby, Wales)
13 Robbie Henshaw (Leinster Rugby, Ireland) #824
12 Bundee Aki (Connacht Rugby, Ireland)
11 Duhan van der Merwe (Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland)
10 Dan Biggar (Northampton Saints, Wales) #821
9 Conor Murray (Munster Rugby, Ireland) #790

1 Rory Sutherland (Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland)
2 Ken Owens (Scarlets, Wales) #829
3 Zander Fagerson (Glasgow Warriors, Scotland)
4 Iain Henderson (Ulster Rugby, Ireland) #808
5 Alun Wyn Jones – Captain (Ospreys, Wales) #761
6 Tadhg Beirne (Munster Rugby, Ireland)
7 Hamish Watson (Edinburgh Rugby, Scotland)
8 Jack Conan (Leinster Rugby, Ireland)

Replacements:
16 Jamie George (Saracens, England) #819
17 Wyn Jones (Scarlets, Wales)
18 Tadhg Furlong (Leinster Rugby, Ireland) #818
19 Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints, England) #826
20 Taulupe Faletau (Bath Rugby, Wales) #779
21 Ali Price (Glasgow Warriors, Scotland)
22 Owen Farrell (Saracens, England) #780
23 Anthony Watson (Bath Rugby, England) #816

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