Gatland Reveals The Extremes Players Have Had To Go To Since Landing In New Zealand

Warren Gatland has revealed that some of his players have been forced to taking sleeping pills to get over their jetlag.

The Lions boss says this played a heavy hand in their lacklustre performance this morning and says the next tour must be looked at from a scheduling point of view. He says that he had hoped they would have a week in New Zealand to prepare for their first game.

While they’ve known about the schedule for 12 months, he says it’s difficult to get it changed but something must be done in four years time.

We’d have preferred to have a week in the UK with the squad and a week in New Zealand,” said Gatland.
“We’ve known about the schedule for 12 months and it’s difficult to change that. I think that the powers that be in four years’ time will think about the schedule and the importance of having the right preparation and the right time.

A number of players were forced to take sleeping pills as they have been unable to sleep because of the sudden shift in time difference.

“We ran the non-23 players this morning and they had a real blow-out because a number of them are still struggling to sleep. So we knew it was going to be difficult in terms of adjusting to that and preparing in such a short period. Ross Moriarty has got a back spasm, and so has Kyle Sinckler.
“We did community stuff yesterday where the guys have been sitting in cars for five hours, coming up (to Whangarei) and are probably still recovering from the effects of that flight as well.”
“Some players have recovered but others are still seeing the doctor, as are the coaching staff with Andy Farrell down in the team room at 4am this morning despite taking a sleeping pill at 11pm last night to try to get some sleep. You’ve got to try and adjust as quickly as possible and we hope over the next couple of days that everyone gets into a cycle so as to feel fresh and acclimatised.

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