Lions Rugby 2021

The British & Irish Lions return to terrestrial television on Channel 4

Category: News Release
  • Live coverage of the Lions’ pre-Tour Test match against Japan
  • Highlights of all three Tests against South Africa on Channel 4
  • All4 to show highlights of all Lions Tour matches

Live coverage of The British & Irish Lions will return to terrestrial television for the first time in nearly 30 years with Channel 4’s broadcast of the Vodafone Lions 1888 Cup against Japan.

In addition to live coverage of the pre-Tour Test match against Japan from BT Murrayfield on 26 June, Channel 4 will also show highlights of all three Tests against South Africa.

This will be the first time the Lions have been on terrestrial television since the 1993 Tour of New Zealand and highlights of all Castle Lager Lions Series Tour matches will be shown on All4.

It’s the latest coup from Channel 4 Sport which earlier this year brought free-to-air live Test cricket back to television screens after a 16-year break with its coverage of England’s our in India.

British & Irish Lions Managing Director Ben Calveley said: “We are delighted that Channel 4 are our broadcast partners for our first match on home soil since 2005.

“I am looking forward to the excellent coverage and analysis that Channel 4 will no doubt provide and going on the recent squad announcement I’m sure the interest and numbers tuning in will be considerable for this clash.”

Channel 4’s Head of Sport Pete Andrews said: “This is set to be a mouth-watering contest with Alun Wyn Jones leading the Lions against the reigning World Champions.

“It’s fantastic news for rugby fans who will relish the opportunity of seeing the British & Irish Lions in action on free-to-air television.”

The Lions matches, presented by Lee McKenzie, are the latest addition to Channel 4’s rugby portfolio which includes live coverage of the Heineken Champions Cup Final between La Rochelle and Toulouse on 22 May and live coverage of Ireland’s Autumn Internationals against the All Blacks, Argentina and another country, yet to be confirmed.