The British and Irish Lions composite rugby union touring organization, and the Rugby Australia body, have entered into an exclusive tie-up with the Pitch International sports marketing agency.

The two organizations have appointed Pitch as the sole international media rights distribution partner for the Lions’ 2025 three-test tour of Australia.

The deal covers media rights for the tour itself, which will cover three tests (in Brisbane, Melbourne, and Sydney) and the customary pre-test warm-up fixtures, as well as international rights for all behind-the-scenes documentaries about the Lions since 1997.

The deal encompasses sales rights in all territories worldwide, with live rights being sold globally while highlights will be distributed to free-to-air partners in the UK and Ireland.

The pre-tour fixture in Ireland between the Lions and Argentina also now falls under Pitch’s sales remit (although UK pay-TV heavyweight Sky Sports already has live rights in those markets).

Sky secured a deal to that effect in November, having covered every tour live since the 1997 trip to South Africa.

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The Australia tour marks the first time since 2013 that the country will play host to the Lions, which as a side is made up of players from England, Wales, Scotland, and Ireland.

The three tests are set for July 18 (Brisbane), July 26 (Melbourne), and August 2 (Sydney).

Ben Calveley, the Lions’ chief executive, has said: “We are delighted to be partnering with Pitch for our international media rights distribution and look forward to working with them to bring the eagerly anticipated 2025 tour to even more fans around the world.”

Henri Kamerling, managing director of rugby at Pitch, added: “We believe that we can use our unique understanding of the rugby media rights landscape to further grow the popularity of this much-loved brand and take it to a truly global audience.”

In mid-October, the Lions unveiled IMG, the global sports and entertainment agency, as their worldwide licensing agency through 2027.

Howden, the international insurance group, was named as a new Lions principal partner in July, meanwhile, securing front-of-shirt sponsorship rights for the Australia tour.

In early 2023, the Lions and Rugby Australia launched a joint venture to combine their respective commercial offerings for the tour and brought in CSM as the tour’s exclusive sponsorship agent.

Mid-January, meanwhile, saw the Lions launch a women's team, with a tour to New Zealand for that side in 2027 unveiled.

The announcement of the tour follows a feasibility study funded by insurance company Howden and Lions founding partner Royal London, which concluded that the optimum time for the tour is 2027.

Pitch International, meanwhile, was unveiled earlier today as an international media rights sales partner for the EFL, English soccer’s second-tier structure, across the 2024-28 cycle.