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Page last updated at 11:36 GMT, Monday, 18 October 2010 12:36 UK

Lions to play Barbarians in Hong Kong in 2013

Ugo Monye races away to score for the Lions in the 28-9 third Test win over South Africa
Ugo Monye scored as the Lions won the third Test against South Africa in 2009

The British and Irish Lions will break new ground in 2013 by playing a game in Hong Kong for the first time.

The Lions will stop off in Asia to face the Barbarians on their way to the three-Test tour of Australia.

Lions chief executive John Feehan said the fixture "would ensure the tour to Australia is even more special".

It has also been announced that ex-Scotland and Lions star Andy Irvine will be tour manager, succeeding Gerald Davies, who becomes Lions chairman.

Irvine, who represented the Lions in 1974, 1977 and 1980, scoring 257 points, was delighted with his new role.

"I feel honoured and privileged to be able to take on the role of tour manager for our 2013 visit to Australia," he told the Scottish Rugby website.


"Last year's tour was a phenomenal showcase for rugby and I look forward to upholding the best of Lions traditions when we travel to the home of the Wallabies for what will be a fantastic experience.

"In the meantime, I can't wait to get my teeth into the planning and logistics that will be so crucial to the success of the tour over the next two and a half years."

The British and Irish Lions are a side made up of players from England, Ireland, Wales and Scotland.

They tour every four years and lost the series 2-1 to South Africa in 2009.

In 2013 they will head to Australia for the first time since 2001, when they also lost 2-1.

John Spencer, chairman of invitational side the Barbarians, welcomed the chance for two teams who share a "unique place" in the sport to meet.

"To bring two such sides together and be able to create history in Hong Kong is very special indeed, and it will be an incredible occasion and the perfect way to kick off the 2013 Lions Tour," he said.

"We are proud and delighted to be part of such an innovative chapter in the history of the Lions and are already looking forward to the match."

Hong Kong is home to the annual Hong Kong Sevens, the most prestigious event in the IRB Sevens Series, and will host a Bledisloe Cup game between New Zealand and Australia on 30 October.

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see also
South Africa 9-28 Lions
04 Jul 09 |  Rugby Union
South Africa 28-25 Lions
27 Jun 09 |  Rugby Union
South Africa 26-21 Lions
20 Jun 09 |  Rugby Union
2009 Lions: Squad & results
09 Jul 09 |  Rugby Union

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