Adelaide will host a momentous fixture preceding the Test matches against the Wallabies in Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney. A full house at the Melbourne Cricket Ground, with its capacity of 100,000, would shatter records for a Lions Test match.
The series finale is scheduled to take place at Sydney’s Olympic Park, where over 80,000 fans are expected to gather.
“We are thrilled to unveil the tour schedule as we eagerly anticipate one of the most highly anticipated series in history,” expressed Lions chief executive Ben Calveley.
In the meantime, an agreement between the Lions, Premiership Rugby, and the United Rugby Championship guarantees an extraordinary two-week preparation period before the tour opener against the Western Force in Perth on 28 June.
This extended preparation time, a departure from previous tours where the Premiership final clashed with the Lions’ opening fixture, will provide the tourists with an optimal chance of securing a series victory.
Calveley extended his gratitude to Premiership Rugby and the United Rugby Championship for their collaboration, resulting in the longest tour preparation period in recent history, thus enhancing the Lions’ prospects of success.
Phil Waugh, Rugby Australia’s counterpart and former Wallaby flanker, hailed the Lions tour as “one of the great sporting festivals.”
He eagerly anticipated the return of the Lions after a 12-year absence and welcomed the tens of thousands of Lions fans from the northern hemisphere.
The tour promises an exhilarating line-up of matches across the country, featuring clashes with Super Rugby franchises, three significant Test matches, and a marquee match in Adelaide showcasing a combined invitational Australia-New Zealand side.
Ieuan Evans, Chairman of The British & Irish Lions, emphasized the unique nature of Lions Tours, both in terms of the immense challenge they present and the cultural impact they have.
Lions tours to Australia have always been memorable occasions, and the upcoming 2025 tour is expected to uphold this tradition.
Having previously toured Australia three times, with series victories in 1989 and 2013, as well as a loss to the then-world champion Wallabies in 2001, the Lions are no strangers to Australian rugby.
Four years ago, Warren Gatland’s team experienced a 2-1 defeat to South Africa in a series played without spectators during the Covid pandemic.
It is widely anticipated that Ireland boss Andy Farrell, who was part of the coaching team in 2013 and 2017, will succeed Gatland as the Lions’ head coach.