France defence coach Shaun Edwards would certainly pick a strong scrummaging, defensively sound Lions pack to face the Springboks.
After laying the foundations for a hat-trick of Grand Slams during his 12 years with Wales, the sport’s most decorated defence coach counted himself out of the coaching equation for this year’s three-Test series against the World Cup holders in South Africa.
“My priority is France – 100 per cent,” said Edwards in response to speculation over a leading role in Gatland’s chain of coaching command.
“Anyone would be proud to go on a Lions tour but I have to concentrate on my main job.
“The French Federation have shown a lot of faith in me. They gave me a four-and-a-half year deal. When I signed my contract, I pretty much knew that the Lions would be off the radar.
“I know from personal experience that the Lions has the highest profile of all. Not only do you have the support of three million people in Wales, you have the whole backing of England, Ireland and Scotland as well.
“Being in France makes it different. They probably don’t understand how prestigious it is to be selected for the Lions but that’s beside the point. I am not expecting a phone call.’’
Shaun Edwards Lions pack (On form):
1. Wyn Jones (Wales), 2. Jamie George (Wales), 3. Kyle Sinckler (England)