LIONS boss Warren Gatland and his coaching staff will sit down today to put the final pieces together for the 2017 squad to tour New Zealand.
Some big names will miss out once again – and expect wild-card bolters like Kyle Sinckler to feature for the most daunting trip the tourists have faced in years.
Here Jonny Fordham, SunSport’s Rugby Correspondent, picks his 37-man Lions party for this summer’s trip to the Southern Hemisphere.
Keep up to date with ALL the latest rugby union and British and Irish Lions news, gossip and rumours
Stuart Hogg, Leigh Halfpenny, Liam Williams, Anthony Watson, George North, Simon Zebo, Sean Maitland.
George North hit form for Wales at just there right time and along with Scotland’s Stuart Hogg, they have to start against the All Blacks. Rob Kearney and Mike Brown just miss out as the likes of Liam Williams and Anthony Watson cover both wing and full-back.
PAPE: ‘DON’T PREACH’
Gerard Pique hits out at Cristiano Ronaldo’s offside goal against Bayern – and PAPE SOUARE bizarrely fires back with Chelsea pics
Roman Reigns brother and former WWE tag-team champion Matthew ‘Rosey’ Anoa’i dead at 47
Klopp loves Hart
Joe Hart set for Liverpool as Jurgen Klopp signs off £20million swoop for Man City keeper
Eye on the ball
Brazilian footballers have a tough time concentrating as stunning lineswoman Denise Bueno officiates… with a kit including a wet T-shirt
Jurgen Klopp risks wrath of Liverpool fans… by backing bitter rivals Manchester United to win Europa League
Conor McGregor’s Aintree hotel suite left trashed and littered with nitrous oxide canisters after five days of wild partying
Eden to Real
Chelsea star Eden Hazard ‘agrees deal to join Real Madrid with Alvaro Morata moving the other way’
Chelsea’s poor performance against Manchester United on Easter Sunday blamed on mystery illness
100 AND WON
Real Madrid 4 Bayern 2 (AET, agg 6-3): Cristiano Ronaldo hits hat-trick on way to 100 Champions League goals to see Real through
A PARTING GIFT?
Alexis Sanchez reveals emotional reason he celebrated so much after Arsenal’s win over Middlesbrough
‘I love him’
Barcelona star Neymar reveals his three favourite strikers in the world, and Man City fans will be delighted
PREM STARS’ JAIL THREAT
Ex-Prem pair Michael Essien and Carlton Cole could be jailed for breaking Indonesian migrant law
Liverpool legend Steven Gerrard wants Antoine Griezmann ‘as far away from Manchester as possible’
kings of europe
Real Madrid make Champions League history after qualifying for seven consecutive semi-finals
More leaked images
WWE star Melina in fresh heartache as more naked pictures of her are leaked on the internet
foxes free fourth spot
Leicester’s departure from Europe is GOOD news for Liverpool, Man Utd, Man City and Arsenal
LIVE – Real Madrid 4 Bayern Munich 2 (6-3 on agg): Cristiano Ronaldo completes hat-trick in extra-time at Bernabeu
Leicester 1 Atletico Madrid 1 (agg 1-2): Foxes Champions League dream dies after Saul Niguez’s away-goal dagger ends their fairy tale run
Prem title race is personal between Chelsea and Tottenham – Spurs players want revenge for last season’s venomous run-in
Owen Farrell, Elliot Daly, Jonathan Joseph, Jamie Roberts, Robbie Henshaw.
Farrell will cover 12 and 10 – but I would start him at centre with Johnny Sexton pulling the strings inside him. Jamie Roberts has bombed since joining Harlequins, but the Wales brute is a Test match animal and a flat-track bully to truck it up the middle.
Johnny Sexton, Dan Biggar.
These two get the nod because of their experience and size. George Ford and Finn Russell miss. Ford is an excellent play-maker, but his place-kicking is too poor for a tour of this magnitude to be relied on.
Rhys Webb, Conor Murray, Ben Youngs.
Webb just gets the nod over Conor Murray in my Test side – but for Gatland – with Johnny Sexton leading the race for the no.10 shirt the Irish half-back pair could be kept together. Ben Young tailed off in the Six Nations for England, though the Leicester Tigers man has that big-game nous.
Billy Vunipola, Toby Faletau, Sam Warburton, Maro Itoje, Peter O’Mahony, Sean O’Brien, Chris Robshaw
Robshaw’s name might be a surprise one – he’s not there for the Test side though. The former England skipper would be an excellent mid-week general and if he was needed to face the AB’s then you know he would give his all.
The rest generally pick themselves and don’t rule out a back-row with Billy Vunipola and Toby Faletau both featuring.
Alun Wyn Jones, George Kruis, Courtney Lawes, Joe Launchbury.
Maro Itoje also drops into this category – and Courtney Lawes can also play as an open side flanker. Alun Wyn Jones and George Kruis could be a devastating pair in the engine room.
Tadhg Furlong, Dan Cole, Kyle Sinckler.
Sinckler would be superb off the bench – explosive and powerful to hurt the All Blacks when they are tiring.
Tadhg Furlong has been immense this season and although Dan Cole can be a walking penalty machine – he should tour to nurture these two rookies.
Dylan Hartley, Jamie George, Rory Best.
Hartley doesn’t get in many Lions XVs chosen, but he deserves a crack. Anyone who has brought together a shambolic England side like he has could also work miracles in whipping together a Lions party in such short time.
Jamie George has the x-factor that Gatland should turn to.
Mako Vunipola, Joe Marler, Jack McGrath.
Vunipola was sensational in Australia for England last summer and has backed it up this year for club and country.
Jack McGrath is rock solid and Joe Marler gets the nod after falling back in love with the game and finding his mojo again.