British and Irish Lions 2017: Warren Gatland's late call-ups make bench for Chiefs
The six controversial British and Irish Lions call-ups are all named among the replacements for Tuesday’s match against the Chiefs in Waikato.
Allan Dell, Kristian Dacey, Tomas Francis, Cory Hill, Gareth Davies and Finn Russell were all drafted in by Warren Gatland over the weekend.
Ireland hooker Rory Best captains the side.
“We are five games into the tour and there is still a lot to play for,” said Gatland.
Iain Henderson, Greig Laidlaw, Dan Biggar and Elliot Daly start having come off the bench in Saturday’s 32-10 win against the Maori All Blacks.
However, the bulk of the squad that beat the Maori are preparing for the first Test against the All Blacks next weekend.
“We are here to win a Test series and we have brought cover for the replacements’ bench so we can limit the number of players who need to double up, which is tough to do at this level of rugby,” added Gatland.
“Those involved on Tuesday will be playing not only for themselves in terms of further selection but also for the whole squad.”
Gatland earlier defended his six call-ups after England coach Eddie Jones said they should be on “merit” rather than geographical proximity.
Four Wales players were summoned from nearby Auckland, and two Scotland players from Australia, while Jones’ England squad are currently on tour in Argentina.
Lions team to face Chiefs:
L Williams (Wales); J Nowell (England), J Payne (Ireland), R Henshaw (Ireland), E Daly (England); D Biggar (Wales), G Laidlaw (Scotland); J Marler (England), R Best (Ireland), D Cole (England), I Henderson (Ireland), C Lawes (England), J Haskell (England), J Tipuric (Wales), C Stander (Ireland).
K Dacey (Wales), A Dell (Scotland), T Francis (Wales), C Hill (Wales), AW Jones (Wales), G Davies (Wales), F Russell (Scotland), T Seymour (Scotland).