Rugby Union

Warburton to captain .

Twitter leak reveals Sam Warburton as British and Irish Lions captain

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Welsh flanker Sam Warburton has been named as British and Irish Lions captain for the second time following an official announcement this lunchtime.

However, it was revealed earlier than it should have been due to the CEO of World Rugby taking to Twitter to congratulate the Welshman, 90 minutes before the official announcement was made.

After being given the captaincy for the second time, Warburton joins Martin Johnson on the list of captaining the British and Irish Lions on two tours.

Given the fact only two players have ever done it before, it shows just how special the achievement is in the sport.

However, the reveal of Warburton being the captain didn't come the normal way through an official announcement, or through the traditional press conference that took place at 12:00 GMT.

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The revelation came about as images leaked on Twitter showed Warburton spearheading a promotional campaign for the Lions. The number seven featured as the only member of the playing team alongside management and coaching staff.

Warburton had been widely tipped as the man who would be taking the armband, but the announcement will be an enormous boost for the Cardiff Blues man after he was relieved of his duties as captain of the Wales national team ahead of the Six Nations.

Gloucester Rugby v Cardiff Blues - European Rugby Challenge Cup

The picture wasn't the only thing that gave it away, however.

Brett Gosper, the CEO of World Rugby, took to his official Twitter account to congratulate Warburton at 10:36 this morning, nearly 90 minutes before an official announcement was expected to be made.

You can see the tweet he posted below, and also see how people reacted to him breaking the news earlier than expected.

As you can see, plenty of unhappy rugby fans reacting to Gosper's decision to announce the news before the official confirmation.

The British and Irish Lions tour begins on June 3 against a New Zealand Barbarians side and culminates with a three-match series against the All-Blacks ending on July 8 in Auckland.

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Topics:
Dylan Hartley
New Zeland Rugby
England Rugby
Six Nations
IRB Rugby World Cup
Rugby Union
Australia Rugby
British & Irish Lions
Sam Warburton

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