Hibbard form makes him look overpriced for Lions hooker spot

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As British Lions fans eagerly await the announcement of Warren Gatland’s starting line-up to face Australia, Ladbrokes offer the chance to bet on who will start where.

And the form of Wales star Richard Hibbard suggests there may be value to be found in his 7/4 price to begin the match as hooker.

After returning from a shoulder injury, the 29-year-old has been in sensational international form, becoming a key component in the Welsh side that roared back to form in retaining the Six Nations title.

Despite making his international Test debut back in 2006, it is only this year he has truly managed to establish himself as a Wales regular, and he will now be hopeful he has done enough to force himself into Gatland’s plans.

He will look to carry his terrific international form into his club rugby with Ospreys to further bolster his chances, and if he can do so, Hibbard may well justify those 7/4 odds to start as the Lions’ number two.

His main competition would appear to come in the form of Rory Best, who is 1/1 favourite to begin the match, and the Irish mainstay would appear the safest option at hooker.

However, as Gatland looks to get off to a winning start against the Wallabies, he may seldom get a better chance to include such an in-form wildcard selection as Hibbard represents.

Constantly hurling himself into the opposition, the Welshman’s playing style epitomises the attitude of the Lions, and that could win him selection favour.

Hibbard himself insists the thought of representing the Lions hasn’t even crossed his mind, telling Wales Online, “Honestly I’m not even thinking about it.

“The way my body goes, it breaks down quite a lot, and there’s two months to go in the season.”

If he can stay injury-free though, Hibbard’s form means he must be seriously considered at 7/4 to start the Lions’ first match at hooker.

All Odds and Markets are correct as of the date of publishing.

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