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Dublin: 20 °C Thursday 28 May, 2020

Breakfast with Lions: Cheika and chums ready as Seanie snuggles down

Can Simon Zebo force his way into the Test team? It’s all up for grabs as the Lions take on the NSW Waratahs in Sydney this morning.

Conor Murray:
Conor Murray: "AAAAAAAAAVE IT!"
Image: ©INPHO/Dan Sheridan

THIS TIME NEXT week we’ll be licking our lips at the thoughts of the first Test but for now, it’s all up for grabs. The Lions are in Sydney for their penultimate warm-up match against the NSW Waratahs and — hey look, there’s Simon Zebo on the wing. *waves*

Let’s get you up to speed:

On the Lions’ menu

There’s a familar face in the enemy ranks this this morning as former Leinster boss Michael Cheika — he of 2009 Heineken Cup fame — and the Waratahs look to upset the tourists. There has been plenty of column inches devoted to the strength of opposition being put up against the Lions, but Cheika got a welcome boost this week when Wallabies squad members Rob Horne and Dave Dennis were released back to him along with Sevens duo Bernard Foley and Matt Lucas.

The ‘Tahs like to play quick rugby with plenty of ball in hand but they’ve struggled in the Super XV so far this season. They’ll need to hang tough for the first hour if they are to set up a tight finish.

Quote from the camp

“It is not getting any easier in terms of selection. There are a lot of guys putting their hands up. We will get tomorrow out of the way, and then tomorrow, and then we will pick a Test team – that is the truth.”

– Assistant coach Graham Rowntree on the Lions’ selection headaches

Pic of the day

“Is this thing on?” Stuart Hogg checks out the other side of the camera during a visit to Granville South High School, Guildford yesterday.

(©INPHO/Dan Sheridan)

You’ve got to see this

We don’t like to dredge up the past for no good reason but it’s hard to sweep this one under the rug. The last time the Lions and the Waratahs met back in 2001, Ronan O’Gara found himself on the end of this vicious attack from opposite number Duncan McRae.

YouTube Credit: RugbyFightsReturn

Lions on the prowl

Dan Lydiate and Seanie are getting up close and personal — but we dare you to take that blankie away from the Tullow Tank. Just try it.

Tweet of the Day

You know what they say: Irish by birth but Munster by the grace of Paulie…

What the Aussies say

“Reality is though that [the Waratahs] are still a sub-par version of a super team that won’t even be making the finals this year. Expect the Lions’ firepower to be too much for the blues in the second half. But if they’re within touching distance on the donger, you just never know…”

-- Matt Rowley, GreenAndGoldBlog

‘BIL’ Watch

He’s in good hands with Richie Gray.

(via @LionsOfficial)

* will be liveblogging the Lions v the NSW Waratahs from 10am today.

The first great flag of the Lions Tour has arrived

The Lions are cheats, just like every other New Zealand side — Bob Dwyer

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About the author:

Niall Kelly

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