CONFIRMED: British and Irish Lions squad announced

CONFIRMED: British and Irish Lions squad announced

EIGHT IRISHMAN included are included in the British and Irish Lions squad for this summer.

Tadhg Furlong, Tadhg Beirne, Robbie Henshaw, Bundee Aki, Conor Murray, Andrew Porter, Iain Henderson and Jack Conan have all been included in the 37-man British and Irish Lions Squad for this summer's tour.

Coach Warren Gatland selected Alun Wyn Jones as his captain for the tour, which kicks off on 17 July.

Jonathon Sexton is one of the biggest omissions from the squad from an Irish perspective, while Bundee Aki's inclusion may also come as a surprise to some fans.

The official series against South Africa begins on 24 July.

The squad in full can be seen here:

Gatland increased the number of players in the squad to 37 from the standard 36, in an attempt to find "balance" within the squad.

Speaking about the difficult decisions that he had to make, Gatland said: "Everyone will start in one of the first three games on the tour. That puts you in the shop window.

"You certainly feel for the guys who have missed out. It has not been an easy decision. We went through a list of names and extended it from the initial number of tourists – from 36 to 37.

"I’d like everyone who missed out to know that it was not an easy choice."