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British and Irish Lions 2005 Tour Fixture Details.

British and Irish Lions 2005 Tour Fixture Details.

The British & Irish Lions have agreed a programme of 10 matches during their 2005 tour of New Zealand, the itinerary for which has just been released.

The British & Irish Lions have agreed a programme of 10 matches during their 2005 tour of New Zealand, the itinerary for which has just been released.

The tour will include three matches against the All Blacks, with the
series starting in Christchurch on June 25th.

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British and Irish Lions Chairman Bill Beaumont said: “As it is 12 years since the British and Irish Lions toured New Zealand it is high time we renewed our long held traditions with the country in general and the All
Blacks in particular.

“The tour itself promises to challenge the 2005 Lions from start
to finish
with a series of difficult assignments but I am absolutely sure that
will rise to that challenge.

“The huge level of interest and enthusiasm shown by the New
Zealand public
in the tour, even already, will be undoubtedly one of the highlights
this tour and we are very much looking forward to meeting all of the
communities we will have the pleasure of visiting while in the

“Any Lions tour is a truly unique event in world rugby and I am
that this tour will be an exceptionally successful and rewarding
for all involved.”

New Zealand Rugby Union Deputy Chief Executive Officer Steve Tew
said: “We
expect this to be one of the biggest sporting events the country has
held. The programme we have put in place reflects that, and should
the opportunity for all New Zealanders to see the Lions in

“Additionally, it will allow the whole country to share in the
benefits that the tour will bring by providing a wonderful
opportunity for
the in excess of 10,000 Lions fans we anticipate will come to New
to see as much of the country as is possible during their time

The Lions will play matches in venues as far apart as Auckland at the
end of the North Island, and Invercargill at the bottom tip of the

There are six weekend fixtures scheduled for the tour, which kicks
off with
a game against Bay of Plenty at the Rotorua International Stadium on
, and four midweek matches.

The tourists will gain a thorough preparation for the Tests through
lead-up matches, five against sides from the first division of the
Air New
Zealand NPC, as well as a fixture against New Zealand Maori.

The Lions’ match against New Zealand Maori, at Waikato Stadium in
on June 11th, promises to be one of the individual highlights of the

The two teams produced a classic match during the Lions’ last visit 11
years ago, with New Zealand Maori romping to a 20-0 halftime advantage
before the tourists clawed their way back to win 24-20.

Another provincial contest that will be keenly anticipated is the
clash with Otago, who have beaten the Lions on four previous
including the 1993 visit when they won 37-24 at Carisbrook.
The Otago match rounds out a demanding week for the tourists who also
New Zealand Maori and Wellington within that seven-day period.

There is just one midweek engagement remaining once the Test series
with the Lions to play Manawatu at Palmerston North between the First
Second Tests.

Manawatu is the only side from the lower divisions of the Air New
to have been awarded a fixture during the tour.

Westpac Stadium in Wellington will host the Lions twice. Wellington
the tourists on June 15th and the second Test will also be held at the
on July 2nd.
The tour concludes with the Third Test at Eden Park in Auckland on
July 9th.

The tour is the 11th by a combined British Isles side to New Zealand.
first was in 1888 and the most recent 11 years ago.
During that time, New Zealand have won 24 Tests to the Lions’ six,
including a 2-1 series victory in 1993 when the All Blacks won the
and Third Tests in Christchurch and Auckland respectively while the
tourists prevailed in Wellington.

The Lions’ only previous series victory in New Zealand was achieved
in 1971
when a side coached by Welshman Carwyn James prevailed 2-1, with the
and final Test in Auckland drawn.

British & Irish Lions Tour of New Zealand 2005 Fixtures List

Match 1: 4 June 2005, Bay of Plenty, Rotorua International Stadium
Match 2: 8 June 2005, Taranaki, Yarrow Stadium, New Plymouth
Match 3: 11 June 2005, NZ Maori, Waikato Stadium, Hamilton
Match 4: 15 June 2005, Wellington, Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Match 5: 18 June 2005, Otago, Carisbrook, Dunedin
Match 6: 21 June 2005, Southland, Rugby Park Stadium, Invercargill
Match 7: 25 June 2005, All Blacks, Jade Stadium, Christchurch
Match 8: 28 June 2005, Manawatu Arena Manawatu, Palmerston North
Match 9: 2 July 2005, All Blacks, Westpac Stadium, Wellington
Match 10: 9 July 2005, All Blacks, Eden Park, Auckland

Kick-off times are yet to be finalised and will be subject to
between NZRFU, the British and Irish Lions and broadcasters.

In a separate but related development the British & Irish Lions are
pleased to announce the appointment of the four official travel
agents for
the New Zealand Tour. They are:
1.Gullivers Sports Travel: Contact telephone +44 (01684) 293 175 or
2.Mike Burton Sports Travel: Contact telephone +44 (01452) 419 666 or
e-mail lionstour@mikeburton.com
3.Titan Travel: Contact telephone +44 (0870) 754 1808 or e-mail
4.ebookers: Contact telephone +44 (0870) 043 3822 or e-mail