WARREN Gatland’s British and Irish Lions squad has been branded a “slab of red meat” in the Australian media following the announcement of the 37-man party.
Australians woke up to the news of Gatland’s squad with their press offering an almost unanimous verdict of Gatland’s intentions – he would try to physically intimidate the Wallabies on their home soil.
Gatland picked the biggest Welsh contingent in more than 30 years after they retained their RBS Six Nations crown by overpowering England on the final day of the tournament.
And scribes Down Under believe that match will provide a precursor of what to expect over the three Tests this winter. The Sydney Morning Herald ran with the on-line headline: “No surprise as Gatland opts for slab of red meat”, while The Australian told fans: “British and Irish Lions’ candy floss rugby will be hard-coated”.
It was suggested the likes of England skipper Chris Robshaw and Joe Lanchbury were left out to accommodate a bruising group of players. “Warren Gatland has surveyed the menu in front of him and opted for red meat – large slabs of it,” Paul Cully wrote in the Sydney Morning Herald.