DFP Header Area

Share this MunsterRugby.ie page

Lions Thank New Zealanders

31st May 2005 By Munster Rugby

Lions Thank New Zealanders

The British & Irish Lions today thanked New Zealanders for turning up in their thousands for the tour s first public training session this (Tuesday) morning.

The British & Irish Lions today thanked New Zealanders for turning up in their thousands for the tour s first public training session this (Tuesday) morning.

The British & Irish Lions today thanked New Zealanders for turning up in their thousands for the tour s first public training session this (Tuesday) morning.

Stadium organisers estimated over 5,000 members of the public were at North Harbour Stadium to see the team train and be put through their paces by coaches.

Buses of kids from local schools, members of local rugby clubs, office workers and other fans of both the Lions and New Zealand all mixed to create a tremendous atmosphere in the stadium.

As well as the various drills covering fitness, sprints, line outs, passing, catching, tackling and kicking, the Lions squad also spent time signing autographs and chatting to the public.

Head Coach Clive Woodward said: Thanks to all those who attended. There was a great atmosphere in the stadium and the players and coaches really enjoyed the session as well as the opportunity to get out there and meet the New Zealand public.

"Rugby is such an important part of the heritage of New Zealand. That is why we wanted to do something different and give the public the opportunity to see the Lions in their preparations for their first game verses the Bay of Plenty."

Captain Brian O Driscoll welcoming the opportunity to meet and greet said, Given it s 12 years since the Lions were last in New Zealand, this was an opportunity to show a whole new generation the 2005 Lions in action.

The crowd were fantastic and the lads were delighted with the reception. It has to be one of the biggest crowds I have ever trained in front of and it was nice to do this in New Zealand where people really understand and appreciate the sport. It has really helped build up the sense of excitement and anticipation ahead of our first game on Saturday.

Number 8 in Saturday’s opener, Lawrence Dallaglio equally impressed by the turn-out, said:
It was fantastic to see so many people come out and watch us train. The reception was brilliant. Obviously we are here to play rugby but we also want to get out and meet people and talk about the game.

The Argentina game was difficult but since then we have had a lot of good time together and we now just want to get out and play.

We are now absolutely focussed on the Bay of Plenty game. I know a fair amount about them because at London Wasps there is a New Zealand contingent and we are expecting a tough and physical encounter. They know this will be their one chance to do something special against us, so we have to be well prepared.

Share

DFP – Right Column – HalfPage

Tags

DFP – Right Column – MPU

Related News

Munster Head Coach Johann van Graan has named an extended squad for Saturday’s pre-season clash against Connacht at the Sportsground (3pm). The game is Munster’s...

X