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It's expected that Alun Wyn Jones will return to the Lions starting XV and captain the side in Saturday's first test with the Springboks. 

The Times have gotten hold of what is purported to be Warren Gatland's matchday 23 for Saturday's encounter in Cape Town.

The team was due to be named on Thursday morning, but Lions chiefs have brought that reveal forward by 24-hours to Wednesday morning.

Conor Murray, it seems, is good enough only for a place on the bench. Scotland's Ali Price will start at scrum-half, with Dan Biggar at no.10.

However, three Ireland internationals are set to start on Saturday.

As expected, Robbie Henshaw is named at inside centre, with England's Elliot Daly outside him.

Tadhg Furlong is in the front row, alongside Wyn Jones and Luke Cowan-Dickie.

While Jack Conan's long road back from injury is rewarded with a starting berth at number-8, in a back row that also includes English pair Courtney Lawes and Tom Curry.

Jones' recovery is even more spectacular, as he had been initially ruled out of the series after suffering a dislocated shoulder in the first warm-up match with Japan.

The 35-year old's 27-minutes against the Stormers last weekend has clearly been enough for Gatland to pick his lieutenant in a second row that also includes Maro Itoje.

Free-scoring winger Josh Adams misses out on the matchday 23 entirely, with Duhan van der Merwe and Anthony Watson preferred on the wings.

Expected Lions team v South Africa: 

15. Stuart Hogg (Scotland/Exeter Chiefs)
14. Anthony Watson (England/Bath)
13. Elliot Daly (England/Saracens)
12. Robbie Henshaw (Ireland/Leinster)
11. Duhan van der Merwe (Scotland/Edinburgh)
10. Dan Biggar (Wales/Northampton Saints)
9. Ali Price (Scotland/Glasgow Warriors)

1. Wyn Jones (Wales/Scarlets)
2. Luke Cowan-Dickie (England/Exeter Chiefs)
3. Tadhg Furlong (Ireland/Leinster)
4. Alun Wyn Jones (Wales/Ospreys)
5. Maro Itoje (England/Saracens)
6. Courtney Lawes (England/Northampton Saints)
7. Tom Curry (England/Sale Sharks)
8. Jack Conan (Ireland/Leinster)


16. Ken Owens (Wales/Scarlets), 17. Rory Sutherland (Scotland/Edinburgh), 18. Kyle Sinckler (England/Bristol Bears), 19. Tadhg Beirne (Ireland/Munster), 20. Hamish Watson (Scotland/Edinburgh), 21. Iain Henderson (Ireland/Ulster), 22. Conor Murray (Ireland/Munster), 23. Owen Farrell (England/Saracens)

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Ali Price Alun Wyn Jones British And Irish Lions Conor Murray Dan Biggar Jack Conan Josh Adams Lions Maro Itoje Owen Farrell South Africa Springboks Stuart Hogg Tadhg Furlong The Lions Warren Gatland

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