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Lions gather to celebrate and support Tom Smith

Lions gather to celebrate and support Tom Smith

Jonny Wilkinson was among those in attendance at the event to celebrate Tom Smith. (Images courtesy of Fireball Ltd)

A host of British & Irish Lions were in attendance as members of the rugby community gathered to support Lions, Scotland and Northampton legend Tom Smith.

Click to find out more about the Tom Smith Foundation and how you can help

Around 40 Lions players from across nations, eras and Tours were present at the two events which celebrated the outstanding career of Smith, who captained Scotland and played six Tests for the Lions, starting all three Tests in 1997 and 2001.

Smith was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer in November and quickly expressed his desire to fight the disease and support his family. The rugby community has rallied around with events held in Scotland in December.

The former Glasgow Warriors and Northampton Saints prop made 61 appearances for Scotland and memorably helped his country win the Five Nations Championship in 1999.

Images courtesy of Fireball Ltd

Two years prior to that triumph Smith went on the Lions Tour to South Africa where he made a telling contribution in the front row. He also starred in the Lions No.1 shirt in Australia four years later.

Smith hung up his boots in 2009 before becoming forwards coach at Edinburgh and then held the same position at Lyon.

Lions chairman Jason Leonard who went on two Tours with Smith was among those in attendance at this week’s events.

“We had a wonderful night celebrating Tom and his amazing career for the Lions, Scotland and Northampton Saints among others,” Leonard said.

“There were two brilliant events over two nights and it was wonderful to see people make a special effort for a fellow Lion and fellow rugby player.

“Tom is getting had huge support from the rugby and sporting community in Scotland and beyond.

“If we as a community of Lions players can play a role in helping him, that is what it’s all about.

“Tom is an inspiration to all of us and we’re all determined to continue doing what we can for him and his family.”

Click to find out more about the Tom Smith Foundation and how you can help

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