INPHO/Dan Sheridan
Developing story

Simon Zebo called into Lions squad, yet Bowe still given hope of return

The Munster wing says his inclusion in the squad is ‘the ultimate goal’.


SIMON ZEBO HAS this morning been called into Warren Gatland’s British and Irish Lions squad as cover.

“I’m absolutely over the moon.” The Munster wing beamed to reporters in Houston through the night.

“It is the best news I could ever have dreamed of. As a professional rugby player the ultimate goal is to be a British and Irish Lion.”

He added: “Hopefully I’ll get the chance to do that if I get my cap. That is something I have to work towards now.”

Earlier, Tommy Bowe has been given a shred of hope to cling to despite breaking a bone in his hand during yesterday’s 12-22 win over Queensland Reds.

Asked post-match if the injury would mean the end of Bowe’s Lions Tour, Warren Gatland had solemnly said: “I would say so, you can deduct that from that.”

However, the morning after appeared to bring new hope to the Lions medical team as SkySports reported that Bowe could be ready for action again in as soon as two weeks.

That time-frame could even put him in with a shout of making the first Test against the Wallabies. Greg Thomas of the Lions’ media team today tweeted that the operation and placement of a metal plate had been a success.

Although the hamstring worry over Rob Kearney, who is in line for a return next Saturday, and a necessity to deploy Stuart Hogg elsewhere has stretched resources in the back three, the call-up of Zebo would suggest that Bowe’s chances of returning remain slim.

O’Driscoll retakes captaincy as loosehead options slot straight in

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