A video of the team talk to the British and Irish Lions by Alun Wyn Jones ahead of their third Test against Australia in 2013 has gone viral online. The current Wales skipper was leading the Lions for the first time in his career after both the tour captain Sam Warburton and 2009 captain Paul O’Connell had succumbed to injuries.
The video was shared by the Lions on social media and it sees the 35-year-old address his team twice on the day of the series-defining Test.
“Faz said there is no tomorrow after today, there is. There is a tomorrow, there is one with this jersey that you will wear and it will remain on you until you finish playing, until you die, from today. And there is a tomorrow without the jersey. We have got 80 minutes to choose which one we want.”
The clip also showed the Welshman’s team talk in the changing room moments before Warren Gatland’s side ran out at the ANZ Stadium. “Just one simple thing from me. We’re hearing no separation in D, no separation in attack. Keep moving, don’t be lazy.
“Put it into one thing – don’t give up. And that’s not on 60 or 65, it’s from the first minute to the 80 plus, you don’t give up. On a kick chase, a jackal, fill it in. You don’t give up on anything for 80 minutes. The biggest mark of respect you can have is getting pulled off blowing out your arse, got nothing left to give. Do not give up on anything.”
"You don't give up on anything for 80 minutes"
Spine-tingling from @AlunWynJones before the 3rd Test in 2013
— British & Irish Lions (@lionsofficial) February 2, 2021
The Lions went on to win the match 41-16 and secure a first series win since 1997 and their first in Australia since 1989. Jones’ former Lions second row partner O’Connell also has a legendary status for some of the rousing team talks he produced across his career.
There is no certainty who Gatland will choose to lead the Lions this summer in South Africa, or if the tour is even going ahead, but Jones, who recently issued a plea to the organisers to make sure a tour happens, is always a contender.
"My fear is that if it goes too far from what is a touring side with 30,000 fans to games at home with no fans, will it keep its special place in rugby’s hearts?"
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) February 2, 2021
Sign up to our mailing list for a weekly digest from the wide world of rugby.Sign Up Now