Gareth Thomas names his five nailed-on Lions, including surprise captain - Ruck

Gareth Thomas names his five nailed-on Lions, including surprise captain

Wales legend Gareth Thomas has named Stuart Hogg as his choice lead the British and Irish Lions on their tour of South Africa this summer.

Thomas captained the Lions himself on the 2005 tour to New Zealand, in the absence of original tour captain Brian O’Driscoll, who was injured in the opening minutes of the first test against the All Blacks.

The Welshman often played at fullback throughout his career and he believes the position would help, not hinder, Hogg’s chances of captaining the Lions.

#1. Stuart Hogg (Scotland)

“One of the standout players, and someone who isn’t being talked about as captain, because they think going to South Africa means that you need to have someone up front, is Stuart Hogg at 15,” said Thomas, who was speaking as part of the Tackle HIV campaign, which aims to tackle the stigma and misunderstanding around HIV.

“He’s someone who plays extremely well for Scotland and he continues his form week in, week out for Exeter. I’ve seen him playing for them and he doesn’t drop his standards at all. As an ex-full-back, I’d like to see somebody with a good vision of the game.

Stuart Hogg

“For me, as a player and as a captain more importantly, being at fullback gives you the ability to see everything that is happening. And it gives you the ability to make decisions that are not confrontational.

“As somebody standing out of the game, seeing everything, Hogg can decide when he feels is the right time to pick it up and when it’s the right time to slow it down.”

DID YOU KNOW? Following his Scotland debut, he discovered he was a distant relative of George Best. A close relative of Best recognised the link after seeing Hogg play on television