1968 British Lions tour to South Africa
Date26 May  – 28 August
Coach(es)Ronnie Dawson
Tour captain(s)Ireland Tom Kiernan
Test series winners South Africa (3–0)
Top test point scorer(s)Ireland Tom Kiernan (35)
1968 British Lions tour to South Africa
20 15 01 04
Test match
04 00 01 03
 South Africa
4 0 1 3

In 1968 the British Lions toured South Africa. The tour was not successful in terms of international results, the Lions losing the Test series against South Africa by three matches to nil, with the other match drawn. The Lions won 15 of their 16 non-international matches, losing only to Transvaal. The touring party was captained by Tom Kiernan, coached by Ronnie Dawson and managed by David Brooks. Star back Barry John broke his collar bone in a dangerous tackle in the first Test.[1][2]

As well as South Africa, games were played against South West Africa (the future Namibia, then part of South Africa) and Rhodesia (the future Zimbabwe).

Unlike the previous two tours to South Africa (1955 and 1962), this British Lions team did not stop off in Nairobi, Kenya, to play East Africa on the way home. However, one member of this tour party was later to play against that team; in 1975 Peter Stagg was living in Zambia and playing rugby for the Ndola Wanderers RFC when the Tuskers visited and he played for Zambia in their first international on 31 August 1975 at Kitwe. Six of the squad would ultimately change codes and play professional rugby league, they are; Mike Coulman, Ken Goodall, Keith Jarrett, Keri Jones, Maurice Richards, and Bryan West.




Bob Lloyd (Harlequins and England) was selected in the original touring team but had to withdraw because of exam commitments and was replaced by Jarrett.[3]


Date Venue Score Opposition Result
18 May 1968 Potchefstroom Lions 20–12 Western Transvaal Won
22 May 1968 Newlands, Cape Town Lions 10–6 Western Province Won
25 May 1968 Mossel Bay Lions 24–6 South West Districts Won
29 May 1968 Port Elizabeth Lions 23–14 Eastern Province Won
1 June 1968 Durban Lions 17–5 Natal Won
3 June 1968 Salisbury Lions 32–6 Rhodesia Won
8 June 1968 Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria Lions 20–25 South Africa Lost
12 June 1968 Upington Lions 25–5 North West Cape Won
15 June 1968 Windhoek Lions 23–0 South West Africa Won
18 June 1968 Ellis Park, Johannesburg Lions 6–14 Transvaal Lost
22 June 1968 Port Elizabeth Lions 6–6 South Africa Draw
29 June 1968 Springs Lions 37–9 Eastern Transvaal Won
3 July 1968 Pretoria Lions 22–19 Northern Transvaal Won
6 July 1968 Kimberley Lions 11–3 Griqualand West Won
8 July 1968 Wellington Lions 14–0 Boland Won
13 July 1968 Newlands, Cape Town Lions 6–11 South Africa Lost
17 July 1968 East London Lions 26–6 Border Won
20 July 1968 Bloemfontein Lions 9–3 Orange Free State Won
22 July 1968 Cradock Lions 40–12 North East Cape Won
27 July 1968 Ellis Park, Johannesburg Lions 6–19 South Africa Lost


18 May 1968 Western Transvaal 12–20 Lions Potchefstroom  
Pen: Durandt (3), Blignaut Try: Telfer (2), Turner, Davies
Con: Kiernan
Pen: Kiernan (2)
Referee: A. Bird

22 May 1968 Western Province 6–10 Lions Newlands, Cape Town  
Pen: van der Merwe, Naude Try: Savage, Richards
Con: Kiernan (2)
Referee: Max Baise

25 May 1968 South Western Districts 6–24 Lions Mossel Bay  
Pen: Kromhout (2) Try: Hinshelwood (2), Taylor, Jones
Con: Hiller (3)
Pen: Hiller (2)
Referee: W. C. Malan

29 May 1968 Eastern Province 14–23 Lions Port Elizabeth  
Try: Nortje
Con: Carelse
Pen: Carelse (2), Adlam
Try: Hinshelwood, Hiller
Con: Hiller
Pen: Hiller (3)
Drop: Turner (2)
Referee: C. de Bruyn

1 June 1968 Natal 5–17 Lions Kings Park, Durban  
Try: McIntosh
Con: Swanby
Try: Edwards, Bresnihan, Turner, Richards
Con: Kiernan
Pen: Kiernan
Referee: W. T. F. Lane

3 June 1968 Rhodesia 6–32 Lions Salisbury  
Try: Smith
Pen: Martin
Try: O'Shea (2), Hinshelwood, Jarrett, Thomas
Con: Kiernan (2), Jarrett (2)
Pen: Kiernan, Jarrett
Drop: Gibson
Referee: P. Robertse

8 June 1968 South Africa 25–20 Lions Loftus Versfeld, Pretoria  
Try: Naude, de Villiers, du Preez
Con: Visagie (2)
Pen: Visagie (2), Naude (2)
Try: McBride
Con: Kiernan
Pen: Kiernan (5)
Referee: Max Baise

12 June 1968 North West Cape 5–25 Lions Upington  
Try: Bruwer
Con: Basson
Try: Hinshelwood, Turner, Young, Telfer, Gibson
Con: Hiller (2)
Pen: Hiller (2)
Referee: J. P. J. Schoeman

15 June 1968 South West Africa 0–23 Lions Windhoek  
Try: Edwards (2), Hiller, Raybould, Savage
Con: Hiller
Pen: Hiller (2)
Referee: H. Kruger

18 June 1968 Transvaal 14–6 Lions Ellis Park, Johannesburg  
Try: Barnard
Con: du Toit
Pen: Steyn, Dannhauser, du Toit
Try: Gibson
Pen: Kiernan
Referee: J. Stander

22 June 1968 South Africa 6–6 Lions Boet Erasmus Stadium, Port Elizabeth  
Pen: Naude, Visagie Pen: Kiernan (2) Referee: J. P. J. Schoeman


  1. ^ "Barry John: Profile". Lionsrugby.com. Archived from the original on 17 July 2011. Retrieved 2 May 2011.
  2. ^ Slot, Owen (17 June 2017). "What it takes to be a Lions captain - by the men who have done it" – via www.thetimes.co.uk.
  3. ^ Reason 1968, p. 34.