Crowd of 16,500 planned for Lions versus Japan match at Murrayfield

Reduced capacity within the stadium means a number of ticket-holders will not be permitted to attend game on 26th June

A crowd of 16,500 is set to watch Japan take on the Lions at Murrayfield on 26th June. Image: © Craig Watson -
A crowd of 16,500 is set to watch Japan take on the Lions at Murrayfield on 26th June. Image: © Craig Watson -

A CROWD of 16,500 will be permitted to attend the British & Irish Lions clash against Japan at Murrayfield on 26th June [kick-off 3pm].

The Vodafone Lions 1888 Cup clash will be the touring side’s only warm-up match before they head off on this summer’s tour of South Africa.

The partial capacity crowd has been agreed in consultation with the Scottish Government, ensuring that appropriate social distancing criteria can be met to allow fans to attend safely. It will be the first time supporters will be able to attend the home of Scottish Rugby to watch an international match since March 2020. Other public health agencies, emergency services and transport providers are collaborating to stage the event.

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“We’re absolutely delighted to be able to confirm today’s news,” said Ben Calveley, Managing Director of The British & Irish Lions.

“It will be brilliant to see a passionate crowd back at Murrayfield for what promises to be a superb game of rugby before we embark on the Tour to South Africa.

“I am sure it will give the entire touring party an enormous boost to play this fixture in front of Lions fans.

“We are very grateful to the Scottish Government for its commitment and support to ensure this fixture would be seen by a live audience.”

Owing to the reduced capacity following the application of agreed social distancing measures within the stadium, a number of ticketholders will not be permitted to attend and will be refunded.

Tickets will be allocated in line with government advice and the ticketing terms and conditions. All ticket holders will be contacted by Friday 28th May to advise if they have been successful in gaining access to the event.

“This is an important first step to bring fans back to BT Murrayfield Stadium and a return to normality,” commented Scottish Rugby Chief Executive, Mark Dodson.

“Through the positive working relationship, we have developed with both Scottish Government and key local partners we are confident we will offer a safe environment for every supporter and look forward to playing our part in hosting this unique sporting occasion and welcoming rugby fans back to Edinburgh.

“I’d like to thank everyone at Scottish Rugby who has contributed to enabling a live crowd to enjoy this match at BT Murrayfield and have no doubt it will be a special day for all involved.”

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The game against the 2019 Rugby World Cup quarter-finalists will be shown live on Channel 4 and broadcast on talkSPORT.

“As a flagship event of international significance, this match has been carefully considered by the Scottish Government,” said Professor Jason Leitch, the Scottish Government’s National Clinical Director.

“The stadium capacity has been agreed, following public health advice, in principle by Ministers but will be kept under review, with all partners continuing to monitor the status of the pandemic in the run up to the match to ensure fans can attend safely. This is the same process used to set the capacity for the Euros at Hampden and for other internationally significant events during the summer.

“While all those in the stadium should of course enjoy the game, they should do so safely – the virus is still out there. Free, fast and regular testing for people who do not have COVID-19 symptoms is available to everyone in Scotland – please take up that offer and do not attend if the result is positive or you have any symptoms whatsoever.

“Stick to your allocated arrival and departure time, follow physical distancing rules and wear a mask at all times, other than when you’re eating or drinking. By following these rules, you will help us beat this virus and ensure many more people can enjoy the thrill of live events in future.”

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About David Barnes 3817 Articles
David has worked as a freelance rugby journalist since 2004 covering every level of the game in Scotland for publications including he Herald/Sunday Herald, The Sunday Times, The Telegraph, The Scotsman/Scotland on Sunday/Evening News, The Daily Record, The Daily Mail/Mail on Sunday and The Sun.


  1. Great to see crowds back at Murrayfield and hopefully it means the same for the Six Nations. Especially with England and France visiting next year. It would be nice for home advantage to actually mean something once more.

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