June 25, 2017 / 6:51 AM / 2 months ago

Best to lead Lions against Hurricanes

Britain Rugby Union - British & Irish Lions Press Conference - WRU National Centre of Excellence, Vale of Glamorgan - 18/5/17 British & Irish Lions Rory Best during the press conference Action Images via Reuters / Henry Browne Livepic

WELLINGTON (Reuters) - Ireland hooker Rory Best will lead the British and Irish Lions for a second time on the tour after being named captain in Warren Gatland's team to play the Wellington Hurricanes on Tuesday.

Best led the Lions to a convincing 34-6 win over the Waikato Chiefs and will captain a similar side against the Super Rugby champions at Wellington Regional Stadium.

The Lions players who lost the series-opener 30-15 against the All Blacks in Auckland on Saturday have all been rested but Gatland said those who impressed in the final midweek match against the Hurricanes could force their way into calculations for the second test on Saturday at the same venue.

"We are obviously hugely disappointed with the result last night but it is important to regroup," Gatland said in a team release on Sunday.

"We know there are a lot of players motivated to go out and get a result for the whole group.

"A few players put their hands up for selection from the Chiefs game and played their way into the test team so they know that there is another opportunity for them on Tuesday against the Super Rugby champions."

Gatland made a few backline changes to the starting side that thrashed the Chiefs, with Jonathan Joseph starting at outside centre, replacing Jared Payne who has been dropped to the bench.

George North replaces Elliot Daly, who played against the All Blacks, as the starting left winger, with Tommy Seymour promoted to the right wing.

Jack Nowell shifts from the right wing to fullback.

Lions team:

15-Jack Nowell, 14-Tommy Seymour, 13-Jonathan Joseph, 12-Robbie Henshaw, 11-George North, 10-Dan Biggar, 9-Greig Laidlaw, 8-CJ Stander, 7-Justin Tipuric, 6-James Haskell, 5-Courtney Lawes, 4-Iain Henderson, 3-Dan Cole, 2-Rory Best (captain), 1-Joe Marler.

Replacements: 16-Kristian Dacey, 17-Alan Dell, 18-Tomas Francis, 19-Cory Hill, 20-George Kruis, 21-Gareth Davies, 22-Finn Russell, 23-Jared Payne.

Reporting by Ian Ransom in Melbourne; Editing by Amlan Chakraborty

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