British and Irish Lions spot not in Wales players' mind - Sam Warburton

Former Wales captain Sam Warburton is widely expected to be part of the British and Irish Lions squad for this summer's New Zealand tour
Former Wales captain Sam Warburton is widely expected to be part of the British and Irish Lions squad for this summer's New Zealand tour
©PA

Sam Warburton insists that the British and Irish Lions tour is not in the focus of the Wales squad as they prepare for the final round of the Six Nations encounter against France on Saturday.

The 28-year-old captained the Lions to 2-1 series victory in their tour of Australia in 2013 and is expected to be one of the top contender to make it to the gruelling tour of New Zealand in June.

England have been the stand out team in the tournament so far with victories in all four matches and retaining the Six Nations title while Scotland and Wales have shown moments of brilliance along with Ireland.

The final round of the tournament will see England - Ireland, Wales - France ad Italy - Scotland taking on each other but Warburton says the focus remains only on performing for the national team.

"It has been on my social media, and wherever I go people have been predicting 'you're in, you're out'. It just pops up everywhere you go.

"And as players, there is nothing you can do but laugh it off. I've mentioned it before, but not one player has mentioned the Lions to each other.

"Obviously, guys want to go on that tour - everybody in our team-room would love to go on the Lions tour - but it's out of our hands completely.

"So all you can do is play as well as you can, and if you get selected you get selected, and if not, there is still a fantastic tour in the summer with Wales with a couple of Tests. So plenty left to play for."

Wales had a mixed tournament so far after winning and losing two games each. They started the season with a lot of promise, defeating Italy 7-33 but lost their encounters against England and Scotland which dented their hopes of winning the tournament.

However, they made amends last weekend when they won against Ireland 22-9 and now are in a realistic position to end second behind England.

"For us, before the Ireland game (Wales won 22-9), we were staring down the barrel of finishing fifth in the Six Nations, which I would have been gutted about, given all the hard work gone in from the players and management," Warburton added.

"And now, potentially, we could finish second, depending on results. We have been in the top three over the past four or five years consistently now, and we don't want to slip out of that.

"That is the motivation for the players. If we finish second, that's not a bad championship. It wouldn't be great, as our goal is to win, but if we come second, that is not too bad."

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