James Haskell stays on message ahead of Provincial Barbarians clash

The flanker won't feature for the British and Irish Lions' opener this weekend

BY Cian Roche 14:53 Friday 2 June 2017, 14:53 2 Jun 2017

Image: David Davies/PA Wire/PA Images

British and Irish Lions flanker James Haskell is staying on message ahead of their first match of the tour of New Zealand.

They take on a Provincial Barbarians side tomorrow and Haskell is being rested for the game.

But like head coach Warren Gatland and captain Sam Warburton, he says the team's not worried about what their opponents will throw up.

"Because we know we don't have a lot of time to prepare for each game, we've got a lot of footage from these teams that we're playing," he said.

"It's going to be an interesting affair. We'll be focusing firmly on ourselves and delivering the style of play that we want to play."

Lions prop Kyle Sinckler also spoke ahead of Saturday's game, crediting his opportunity on the international stage with England with making this year's Tour.

"It's funny how fast things change in rugby," he said. "A year ago, I was uncapped. I was lucky Eddie [Jones, England head coach] gave me a chance.

"He picked me out of nowhere and brought me to Australia for the experience more than anything.

"I was lucky to get my cap in November and being drip-fed a few minutes here and there. I'm happy to take it slowly and go game-by-game to do my job for the team."

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