British & Irish Lions Head Coach Warren Gatland has spent two days in Guernsey touring local facilities ahead of a possible training camp this summer, it has been confirmed.
The Telegraph reported earlier this week that the Lions are set to enjoy a 10-day training camp in Jersey and Guernsey that allows the squad freedom to bond over a beer.
Those reports come after Gatland visited Jersey earlier this year to scout sports facilities which could be used as part of a contingency plan if the summer tour of South Africa had to be moved to the British Isles due to the pandemic.
As part of the initial talks with Guernsey, Gatland was given special permission to visit the island this week so that he could tour the facilities on offer.
"This was a short visit over two days that was very tightly controlled, so we were comfortable it could be done safely," said Director of Public Health Dr Nicola Brink.
"Measures including a post-travel test result, test on arrival, testing on each day, remaining in a hotel room with room service for meals and only leaving to visit a specific location or drive around the island in a car, were put in place. I thank Mr Gatland for his full co-operation."
Pictured: A quote attributed to Dr Brink in a States press release says that: "this is a process we have used many times during our management of the pandemic where there has been a justifiable need for someone to visit the island but not complete the full self-isolation requirements.”
Chief Minister Peter Ferbrache said the trip was necessary, as without it there would be no chance of the Lions visiting this summer.
"While there is no guarantee that the British Lions will visit in June, what we could guarantee was that they wouldn’t be able to unless their Head Coach had been able to satisfy himself that the rugby and necessary facilities on-island were appropriate for their needs.
"We don’t want to get people’s hopes up in case it doesn’t happen, but this is potentially a fantastic opportunity and would provide the island’s economy with a significant boost at a time when we need to explore all possibilities."
Pictured top: Footes Lane and Lions Head Coach Warren Gatland (Credit: National Assembly for Wales)
More to follow...