Lions too hot to handle for Barbarians in Hong Kong

Cian Healy takes plenty of stopping during last night's encounter with the Barbarians at Hong Kong Stadium. The Lions ran in eight tries in a 59-8 victory. Photo: Sam Tsang

The British & Irish Lions were feelin' hot, hot, hot after they hammered the Barbarians 59-8 in an opening performance at Hong Kong Stadium last night, which is certain to sound the alarm bells in Australia.

Tuesday, 18 February, 2014, 4:28pm

Barbarians coach says Varty will be richer for experience without having played against Lions

Rowan Varty

Barbarians head coach Dai Young insisted Hong Kong's Rowan Varty would benefit from his experience with the team despite not being picked to face the Lions in front of his home crowd.

1 Mar 2014 - 3:22pm

Barbarians lose honour over Varty snub

Fans cheer as the British & Irish Lions assert their dominance over the Baa-Baas last night. Photo: Sam Tsang

The first thing you notice is space, copious amounts of it. It's actually a bit disorienting. First time back in Hong Kong Stadium since the Sevens and the body is naturally conditioned to fight for every square inch of space while you crawl over all the drunks and dough heads. But not tonight.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:42pm

British & Irish Lions v Barbarians: minute-by-minute blog

Owen Farrell (right) celebrates after his team scored a try during the first half. Photo: Reuters

It's just over an hour to kick off here at Hong Kong Stadium for the historic meeting between the Lions and the Baa-baas, the first time these two have played in Hong Kong.

18 Feb 2014 - 6:23pm 1 comment

Young Scot Stuart Hogg is the guardian Lion

British and Irish Lions fullback Stuart Hogg, who is the custodian of 'Bil' the team mascot, brings him to training in Hong Kong yesterday. Photo: Reuters

Stuart Hogg might just be the person to unlock Australia's defences over the next seven weeks, having been put through the mill over the past few weeks by his teammates.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:51pm

Lions’ clash with Barbarians gives Hong Kong slice of history

Mike Teague coaches children from Po Leung Kuk kindergarten yesterday. Photo: SCMP

When the Lions take to the pitch tonight against the Barbarians, it will be an unprecedented opportunity for fans in Hong Kong to see some of the world's top rugby players in action.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:52pm

Lions ask for water breaks to beat Hong Kong heat

Lions train at Aberdeen Sports Ground yesterday under a hot sun as Toby Faletau takes advantage of the water-spraying fans given to the team to help them keep their cool before their match against the Barbarians at Hong Kong Stadium tonight. Photos: Reuters, AP, AFP

A ball has yet to be kicked but the British and Irish Lions are already breathless, falling victim to hot and humid Hong Kong. In an extraordinary move, they want water breaks in their opening game on the 2013 tour of Australia against the Barbarians today.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:54pm

British and Irish Lions can't stand the Hong Kong heat

Warm hugs, Lions. Photo: Screenshot from Guardian video (below)

“Our sessions have been a shock to the system, and the locals think the game is going to be played on the warmest day of the year. I think the conditions could be more difficult than anything I've experienced in my career," said Lions forward Adam Jones.

29 Aug 2013 - 4:13am

Injured skipper Warburton out of Lions opener

British & Irish Lions coach Warren Gatland at a news conference at the Grand Hyatt Hotel in Wan Chai yesterday. Photo: Sam Tsang

Injured captain Sam Warburton was desperate to lead out the British & Irish Lions in their tour opener against the Barbarians tomorrow, but head coach Warren Gatland refused to take the risk and yesterday handed the honour to Paul O'Connell.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:55pm

Captains’ runs at stadium cancelled over pitch concerns

British and Irish Lions players. Photo: AFP

Ever-present concerns over the pitch have forced the British & Irish Lions and the Barbarians to forsake the right to have their captain's run at the Hong Kong Stadium today.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:56pm

O’Connell to lead Lions in showdown with Barbarians

Richie Gary (left) and Toby Faletau (right) will start for the British & Irish Lions against the Barbarians in Hong Kong tomorrow. Photo: AP

Ireland’s Paul O’Connell will captain the side in place of Sam Warburton but nine Welshman were included in Warren Gatland’s first British & Irish Lions team for tomorrow’s match against the Barbarians.

18 Feb 2014 - 6:22pm

Varty set for Barbarians bench after day of torment

The British and Irish Lions train for the first time at Aberdeen Sports Ground ahead of Saturday's Baa-Baas clash. Photo: K. Y. Cheng

Dropped, then reinstated as a "standby" replacement within hours. That was the amazing emotional journey Hong Kong winger Rowan Varty endured yesterday before finally discovering he would be in the frame for Saturday's game against the British and Irish Lions at Hong Kong Stadium.

1 Mar 2014 - 3:29pm 1 comment

Lions need winning start, says former captain Dallaglio

British and Irish Lions' Mako Vunipola tries to keep cool during training at Aberdeen Sports Ground yesterday. Photo: K.Y.Cheng

Momentum will be key if the British & Irish Lions are to have a successful campaign in Australia, says Lawrence Dallaglio, one of the last men to have donned the famous red shirt and returned from tour with a smile on his face.

18 Feb 2014 - 4:57pm

Lions fans fail to show for historic Barbarians clash in Hong Kong

The Lions arrived in Hong Kong yesterday for Saturday's encounter with the Barbarians, but without their travelling horde of fans. Photo: Reuters

Hong Kong has delivered on its part of the deal in trying to fill Hong Kong Stadium for Saturday’s historic clash between the British & Irish Lions and the Barbarians, rugby chief Trevor Gregory said today.

18 Feb 2014 - 5:00pm

Baa-Baas vow to lift tempo for Hong Kong Lions clash

Barbarians' Jim Hamilton takes part in a training session at So Kon Po yesterday as his team prepare to face the Lions. Photo: K.Y. Cheng

Stung by widespread media criticism over the disappointing performance against England, the Barbarians management has all but read the riot act to its players and promised to step it up for Saturday's historic clash against the British & Irish Lions at Hong Kong Stadium.

1 Mar 2014 - 3:27pm