Anticipation builds for 2021 Castle Lager Lions Series

As excitement builds for the upcoming 2021 Castle Lager Lions Series, we have been working on a number of projects for both the British & Irish Lions and SA Rugby in the past month.

The first of those – the British & Irish Lions squad announcement – is one of the most significant dates in the calendar, hotly anticipated by rugby fans across the world. This year, we helped the Lions do things slightly differently, deploying extended reality to bring the announcement to life on May 6th.

The reveal was the first in a series of virtual and hybrid events, where we created a virtual British & Irish Lions studio in London as well as producing a 75-minute broadcast, streamed via the Lions YouTube channel, social channels and website, and the official Lions app powered by Vodafone.

The show included in-person interviews, interviews via Zoom brought onto the stage, and the use of AR technology to “teleport” the Captain, Alun Wyn Jones, into the environment from a remote location.

The technology was created using SmartStage which provided the perfect 3D environment to align with The British & Irish Lions bespoke design, integrating its partners into the product. The bespoke design also allowed the Lions to drop in legends from the four corners of the UK and Ireland and ensure that a livestream package could be placed through broadcast and online digital channels.

The announcement itself also brought good news for seven of the clients we represent, as Dan Biggar, Elliot Daly, Chris Harris, Jamie George, Courtney Lawes, Hamish Watson and Duhan Van Der Merwe were all named in the squad for the 2021 Tour. We can’t wait to see them in action.

Since then, we have also helped the Lions and SA Rugby bolster its portfolio of partners, brokering deals with Dove Men+Care, Land Rover, Coca-Cola, PAS and Boschendal Wine who have come on board as Official Sponsors to the teams and Tour.

MTN has also been announced as the Principal Partner of SA Rugby and the Springboks for the upcoming Castle Lager Lions Series in a deal we also negotiated. As lead partner, the MTN logo will be displayed on the front of the Springbok shirt.

It’s now just a few weeks until we get a first glimpse of the British & Irish Lions in action, as they take on Japan at Murrayfield in the 1888 Vodafone Cup on June 26. As the branding supplier, our Live team will be on hand to deliver all the stadium branding for the first warm-up fixture. The squad will then head to South Africa, with the Castle Lager Lions Series getting underway on 3rd July in Johannesburg.