Ugo Monye, Chris Jones and Danny Care dissect the biggest rugby union stories of the week
The Premiership is back... and so are Saracens
Danny and Chris are on the sofa to review a busy weekend of rugby while Ugo's in a velodrome. But more importantly, who caught the eye on the opening weekend of the Premiership? Saracens deliver on their return top-flight and Leicester continue to impress. There's also a look at the United Rugby Championship which starts this weekend and the brave new world of expected points. Plus, Danny introduces Chris to the world of Uber helicopters.
The road to Twickenham (and Strictly) starts here!
After Danny won the Premiership title for the pod last season, can Ugo add the Glitterball trophy to the Rugby Union Weekly trophy cabinet? Chris and Danny find out how he's feeling about his Strictly debut and let him know what the bookies think of his chances. The road to Twickenham also starts this weekend with Saracens back after a year in the Championship, but do they return as favourites? Danny gets to interview his new boss Tabai Matson and decides to ask about a new contract. There's also new laws to debate and a whole new format of the game to discuss in the World12s.
What next for the Lions and Gatland?
Ugo Monye Danny Care, Chris Ashton and Chris Jones look at how the Lions tour of South Africa will be remembered. Will it go down as a missed opportunity for the Lions? They also debate whether Warren Gatland should remain as head coach for the next series in 2025. Are there any standout candidates who could fulfil the role? And with it being the last pod of the series, we pick some highlights and lowlights from the past 12 months.
The final Test review with Kearney, Williams and Skinstad
After winning the series for South Africa 12 years ago, Morné Steyn returned to break Lions' hearts all over again. Ugo and Chris discuss where it went wrong for Warren Gatland's side after once again surrendering a first-half lead. They get the thoughts of Irish legend Rob Kearney, who was part of the Lions team in 2009. They also speak to Shane Williams and former Springbok captain Bob Skinstad gives us the South African take on another victory over the Lions.
The final Test preview with O'Gara, Lydiate and Horgan
Ugo and Chris are joined by Shane Horgan to look ahead to the series decider this weekend. It's been a testing series to say the least, so much does the game need a thrilling finale on Saturday? We get the perspective of La Rochelle head coach Ronan O'Gara on how they play at a quicker tempo and beat the Springboks. And Dan Lydiate, who played in the series decider in 2013, gives a fascinating insight into how Warren Gatland operates during a big Test week.
Gatland rolls the dice for Test decider
So Warren Gatland has selected the Lions team he hopes will clinch the series against South Africa, but is everybody convinced? Danny Care, Chris Ashton and Chris Jones give their verdict on Gatland's team and highlight some concerns heading into the decider. And what can we expect from South Africa without three of their World Cup stars?
Top drawer rugby banter
Great rugby bants fellas 👏🏻 👏🏻. Top show & some great guests. A pleasure to listen to you in Hong Kong!
I am retired and living on the beautiful island of Taiwan.
I get to watch a lot of the UK rugby via a super App called Rugby Pass,and love to hear your comments in the Pod of games I have watched,as well as hearing from your guests.
Love the banter and think that Danny Care is a natural for a job in Media after his Rugby career is finished. Chris Jones better get back smartish if he wants to continue his role!!!
Tim on Taiwan.
Based in Hong Kong where the rugby scene is pretty strong, it’s great to get a global view of world rugby. Great insight with players, former players and decent BBC journalists covering the sport from top to bottom. Loved both the Lions coverage and the Christmas special, though you failed to mention my tweet and favourite team. Have a great NY and look forward to listening in 2018. Cheers Doug in HK