The British & Irish Lions has announced that they will play their first ever test match against the Brave Blossoms next year as a curtain raiser for their tour to South Africa.
The Lions will face the World Champions next year. Tickets for this test match will go on pre-sale, Tuesday 3 November and supporters can register at lionsrugby.com/Vodafone-1888-Cup.
Lions coach believes that this will be just what the Lions need before they go to face the Springboks in a three-test series.
“We saw Japan play some excellent rugby during the World Cup and they will come to Edinburgh fully-motivated to win,” said Gatland.
“They are a talented side who play high-tempo rugby, so it’ll be a good challenge for us ahead of the Tour, and a chance for the match day squad to put their hands up for Test selection.”
Japan head coach Jamie Joseph is also relishing the prospect of the fixture: “We are very much looking forward to playing a Test against the Lions next year.
“It is truly a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our players, and we can’t wait for it to come.”
The Lions’ eight-game tour to South Africa kicks off on Saturday 3 July 2021 when they play Vodacom Super Rugby’s DHL Stormers in Cape Town.
The first test against the Springboks will be at the FNB Stadium three weeks later.
The second test is scheduled for 31 July in Cape Town with the final test scheduled for the 7 August at Emirates Airline Park