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American-born player in Lions squad

Nashville native Tommy Seymour has been selected to the British & Irish Lions for their tour of New Zealand this summer. The Glasgow Warriors and Scotland winger was one of 41 players named by tour manager John Spencer in a presentation this morning. Seymour was born and lived in Tennessee until the age of nine before moving to Dubai and then Ireland, where he would stay and represent the country at u19 level. He qualified for Scotland by virtue of his Glasgow-born mother and has won 36 caps since making his international debut in 2013.

Seymour is not the only Americas connection in the 2017 Lions squad. Saracens lock George Kruis was eligible to play for Canada before opting for England. Born and raised in Surrey, his father is Canadian. Kruis is named to the squad despite missing the entirety of the Six Nations tournament, and is selected at the expense of Wasps and England star Joe Launchbury.

All but five have played test rugby against Americas teams during their careers. The exceptions are prop Tadhg Furlong, second row Maro Itoje, back row CJ Stander, scrumhalf, Rhys Webb, and midfielder Ben Te’o. Of note is that 13 have played against Uruguay in World Cup competition, while nine have played tests against three Americas nations, but none against all four World Cup qualifiers. Rory Best and Alun Wyn Jones hold the most tests against Americas teams at 10 each, with Jones facing the Pumas an amazing eight times in his illustrious career.

The tour kicks off on June 3 in Whangarei and wraps up nine matches later at Auckland’s famous Eden Park. Below is the 41-man squad selected with caps won against Americas teams.

Joe Marler (Harlequins & England) – ARG x 4, URU x 1
Jack McGrath (Leinster & Ireland) – ARG x 3, CAN x 1
Mako Vunipola (Saracens & England) – ARG x 1, URU x 1

Rory Best (Ulster & Ireland) – ARG x 5, CAN x 3, USA x 2
Jamie George (Saracens & England) – ARG x 1, URU x 1
Ken Owens (Scarlets & Wales) – ARG x 2, URU x 1

Dan Cole (Leicester Tigers & England) – ARG x 3, URU x 1
Tadhg Furlong (Leinster & Ireland) – n/a
Kyle Sinckler (Harlequins & England) – ARG x 1

Iain Henderson (Ulster & Ireland) – ARG x 4, CAN x 1, USA x 1
Maro Itoje (Saracens & England) – n/a
Alun Wyn Jones (Ospreys & Wales) – ARG x 8, CAN x 1, USA x 1
George Kruis (Saracens & England) – ARG x 1, URU x 1
Courtney Lawes (Northampton Saints & England) – ARG x 5

Taulupe Faletau (Bath & Wales) – ARG x 2
Ross Moriarty (Gloucester & Wales) – ARG x 1, URU x 1
Sean O’Brien (Leinster & Ireland) – CAN x 2
Peter O’Mahony (Munster & Ireland) – ARG x 1, CAN x 3, USA x 1
CJ Stander (Munster & Ireland) – n/a
Justin Tipuric (Ospreys & Wales) – ARG x 4, URU x 1
Billy Vunipola (Saracens & England) – ARG x 4
Sam Warburton (Cardiff Blues & Wales) – ARG x 3, USA x 1

Conor Murray (Munster & Ireland) – ARG x 3, CAN x 1, USA x 1
Rhys Webb (Ospreys & Wales) – n/a
Ben Youngs (Leicester Tigers & England) – ARG x 2

Dan Biggar (Ospreys & Wales) – ARG x 2, CAN X 2, USA x 1
Owen Farrell (Saracens & England) – ARG x 2, URU x 1
Jonathan Sexton (Leinster & Ireland) – ARG x 4, CAN x 1, USA x 1

Elliot Daly (Wasps & England) – ARG x 1
Jonathan Davies (Scarlets & Wales) – ARG x 3, CAN X 1, USA x 1
Robbie Henshaw (Leinster & Ireland) – ARG x 1, CAN X 1, USA x 1
Jonathan Joseph (Bath & England) – ARG x 3, URU x 1
Ben Te’o (Worcester Warriors & England) – n/a

George North (Northampton Saints & Wales) – ARG x 4
Jack Nowell (Exeter Chiefs & England) – URU x 1
Tommy Seymour (Glasgow Warriors & Scotland) – ARG x 3
Anthony Watson (Bath & England) – URU x 1
Liam Williams (Scarlets & Wales) – ARG x 2, URU x 1

Leigh Halfpenny (Toulon & Wales) – ARG x 5, CAN x 1
Stuart Hogg (Glasgow Warriors & Scotland) – ARG x 3, CAN x 1, USA x 2
Jared Payne (Ulster & Ireland) – CAN x 1

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Formally created in June 2015, this website's goal is to increase media exposure of the Tier 2 rugby nations, and create a hub with a focus on the stories of rugby in the Americas - North, Central and South.

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