British and Irish Lions: South Africa side Sharks set to face tourists on Saturday

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The British and Irish Lions play the SharksThe proposed rematch will be played at Loftus Versfeld in Pretoria rather than Ellis Park in Johannesburg
Date: Saturday 10 July Kick-off: 17:00 BST Venue: Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria
Coverage: Live text commentary on the BBC Sport website and app

The British and Irish Lions intend to play the Sharks, who they beat 54-7 on Wednesday, again on Saturday after their original opposition pulled out of the game after positive Covid-19 tests.

The Lions have two cases, but put out a winning makeshift side in midweek.

The tourists will take more Covid tests on Thursday and Friday.

"The results of those tests will determine whether we will be able fulfil this fixture, but, as it stands, we are optimistic," said the Lions managing director Ben Calveley.

26 JuneJapan Won 28-10
3 JulySigma Lions Won 56-14
7 JulyCell C SharksWon 54-7
10 JulyCell C Sharks *
14 JulySouth Africa A
17 JulyDHL Stormers
24 JulySouth Africa
31 JulySouth Africa
7 AugustSouth Africa
* - Vodacom Bulls fixture changed because of positive Covid test results

"The choice of the Cell C Sharks was dictated by the fact that they have been in a bubble, have returned negative tests throughout and were prepared to take on the fixture," said SA Rugby chief Jurie Roux.

"No other team in the country could meet those conditions right now - without going into a five-day lockdown. It is not an ideal situation, but Covid-19 has made sure that we do not live in an ideal world."

The Sharks will be without their Springbok stars such as Siya Kolisi and Makazole Mapimpi for the match.

South Africa's preparations for the three-Test series, which begins on 24 July, have also been disrupted with 12 Covid cases in the world champions' camp causing their planned warm-up Test against Georgia to be cancelled.

"We remain committed to the Tour in South Africa and determined to rise to the challenges created by the Covid-19 pandemic," added Calveley.

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