British & Irish Lions coach Warren Gatland has issued an extraordinary request ahead of the final stages of the 2013 Six Nations.
The New Zealander, currently on a sabbatical from his position as Wales' head coach, has made a formal request to a selection of players from the Home Unions to not 'harm, hurt, obstruct or otherwise hinder' each other during the last two games of the championship as well as for the rest of the domestic season.
It is believed around forty players in line for selection for the summer tour to Australia have received a letter from the Lions management asking them to refrain from 'excessive physical contact' with other players also earmarked for possible selection for the 2013 Lions.
"We are requesting that players who we hope will be playing this June and July to make a pact with each other," said Gatland. "We hope they won't tackle each other, for example, or clear each other out forcefully at rucks. Basically, anything that could cause injury we want to avoid. For instance, we don't want Dan Cole running full speed at Ryan Jones. Or, heaven forbid, Danny Care running aggressively into Mike Phillips.
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