2009 Lions team manager Gerald Davies says preparations for the 2013 tour of Australia are quickly gathering pace.
Davies was a figurehead during the tour of South Africa and although the Lions fell to a test defeat to the Springboks he insists it was ultimately a successful campaign.
“South Africa 2009 was a very happy tour,” said the former Cardiff, Wales and Lions wing.
“We ticked all the boxed – the players gelled, there was a good spirit and attitude in the squad, they trained ferociously and played hard, and we had time off to enjoy ourselves. A bit of fun is important on a long tour like the Lions.”
From the moment the final whistle was blown following the Lions’ 28-9 victory over the Springboks in the third and final Test, behind the scenes preparations began for the trip ‘down under’ began.
“It was my recommendation that as soon as 2009 was over we should start preparing for 2013,” added Davies.
“A Lions tour is a huge logistical challenge and campaign. But we’re well on our way to putting everything in place for Australia.
“The sponsorship is in place, the fixture list is about to be ratified, and some off the field personnel are in place.”
Davies revealed a decision on who will take charge of the 2013 touring party is likely to take place at the beginning of the year.
“The coach will be a critical choice and it won’t be an easy one. For many reasons it will be difficult, but we’re not making that decision now.
“It’s an open field at the moment and it will be well into next year that we make that decision.
“The most valuable thing about the Lions is that it is so rare. The Lions is a great concept, four countries coming together to form one team.
“It will be key in Australia that the squad gel with attitude, spirit and a bit of fun as we did in 2009.
“We ticked all the boxes bar one, a Test series win, that’s what we want to achieve in Australia.”