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The all-conquering 2005 All Blacks

John GriffithsNovember 19, 2013
The All Blacks backed up a win over the Lions with a Grand Slam of the Home Unions © PA Photos
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Has any country backed up hosting the Lions with a Grand Slam of the Home Unions in the same year? Graham, England

The only side to host a Lions tour and achieve a Grand Slam of the Home Unions in the same year is New Zealand.

Tana Umaga's All Blacks defeated the Lions 3-0 in the 2005 series and went on to achieve a Grand Slam of the British/Irish sides on its subsequent northern tour. They beat Wales 41-3, Ireland 45-7, England 23-19 and Scotland 29-10. Umaga was rested for the Ireland game on that tour, Richie McCaw taking over to lead New Zealand for only his second time at Test level.

It should be added that the opportunity does not arise very often. The only other times a side has hosted the Lions and undertaken a full Test tour of the Home Unions in the same year were 1966 (Australia briefly hosted the Lions en route for New Zealand) and this year (Australia again).

John Griffiths is a widely respected rugby historian and is the author of several sports books, a regular contributor to the Daily Telegraph and co-author of the IRB International Rugby Yearbook. He has provided insight for Scrum.com since 1999.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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Writer Bio

John Griffiths is a widely respected rugby historian and is the author of several sports books, a regular contributor to the Daily Telegraph and co-author of the IRB International Rugby Yearbook. He has provided insight for Scrum.com since 1999.

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