The end of Russell's B&I Lions tour?
SQUAD UPDATE: The British & Irish Lions head coach, Warren Gatland has called up Marcus Smith as injury cover for Finn Russell.
The Harlequins flyhalf Smith, who featured for England against Canada at Twickenham, will fly to Cape Town on Sunday to join up with the Lions touring party.
Flyhalf Russell is managing an Achilles issue and will not feature in the next three scheduled fixtures in the Lions Series in South Africa.
#InjuryUpdate! @lionsofficial without two key players for their clash against @TheSharksZA #rugby #news https://t.co/WeeZdupTaS
— rugby365.com (@rugby365com) July 10, 2021
“We’re obviously disappointed for Finn, who I think has been outstanding since he came into camp in Jersey, but we are optimistic he’ll still play an important role in the Tour,” said Gatland.
“We have two experienced flyhalves in Owen Farrell and Dan Biggar, so it’s a great opportunity for the continued development of Marcus.
Hear from Head Coach, Warren Gatland, on our latest call-up @MarcuSmith10 ⬇️#LionsRugby #CastleLionsSeries #LionsSA2021 pic.twitter.com/Emv7Id9CZs
— British & Irish Lions (@lionsofficial) July 10, 2021
“I’ve been following him closely for the past 12 months and I’ve been impressed with how well he’s matured as a player.
“Finn and Marcus are similar in that they like to play with a bit of freedom, so, for me, it’s as close to a like-for-like cover as we can get. We look forward to welcoming him to the group in Cape Town.”