Join our mailing list now! Join our mailing list now!
Close Notice
Show scores

How Gatland's Lions record compares


How Gatland's record compares to other multi-tour Lions coaches

Warren Gatland will lead the British and Irish Lions on his third tour as head coach in South Africa in 2021. Here is how the New Zealander’s record stacks up against the other three coaches to have led the Lions on multiple tours…


Tours: 4 (1989, 1993, 1997, 2009)

Test record: Won 6, lost 6

The Scotsman has more tours to his name than any other coach, starting in 1989 when he led the Lions to victory in Australia by the narrowest possible margin, winning the deciding third Test 19-18 and the series 2-1.

Video Spacer

The tour of New Zealand four years later ended in defeat by the same 2-1 scoreline but McGeechan stayed on as joint coach with Jim Telfer for the 1997 2-1 series win over South Africa.

He returned to the fray for the 2-1 defeat to South Africa in 2009, the year before he was knighted for services to rugby.


Tours: 2 (2013, 2017, appointed for 2021)

Test record: Won 3, lost 2, drawn 1

Having assisted McGeechan as forwards coach in 2009, Gatland took the top job for 2013’s tour of Australia and secured a 2-1 series success with a thumping 41-16 in the deciding Test in Sydney.

He also presided over the tied series against New Zealand last time out, rounded off by a 15-15 draw in Auckland, and will become the only man other than McGeechan to complete the set of the modern-day southern hemisphere powers when his side tackle South Africa in two years’ time.


Tours: 2 (1927, 1930)

Test record: Won 5, lost 4

The 1927 tour of Argentina saw Baxter’s squad win the Test series 4-0, by a combined 160 points to three – including their tour matches, they conceded only nine points in as many games.

That was enough to earn Baxter, a forward in his playing days as well as an Olympic medallist in sailing, the job for 1930 when the Lions lost 3-1 in a series of close matches against New Zealand and were then beaten 6-5 in a one-off Test against Australia.


Tours: 2 (1983, 1997)

Test record: Won 2, lost 5

A decent record with Scotland earned Telfer the job for the 1983 tour, where the All Blacks inflicted a 4-0 whitewash.

He returned for a second spell with his national team and joined McGeechan for the 1997 Lions tour as joint coaches, delivering the memorable “Everest” team talk to the forwards ahead of the first Test and improving his record with that 2-1 series win over the Springboks.

– Press Association 

WATCH: Episode six of Don’t Mess with Jim, the weekly RugbyPass series hosted by former Scotland international Hamilton

Video Spacer

Sign up to our mailing list here and we’ll keep you up to the minute with weekly updates from the world of rugby.

How Gatland's record compares to other multi-tour Lions coaches
Search Loading