Rassie Erasmus says that all options will be explored to allow South Africa play the Lions this summer.
The Lions tour of South Africa is in doubt due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Other options, such as the games being played in the UK and Ireland instead - with there possibly being a test hosted by Croke Park - have been mooted.
"We desperately want to play the Lions, and we will do anything to play them," Erasmus, now the Springboks' director of rugby, said on Monday.
"This series only comes around every 12 years. I have heard the different calls and opinions about the tour, and although we didn’t play in the Rugby Championship because of player welfare, it was also because we knew there was this big series in 2021.
"If option one of playing in South Africa doesn’t work out, we will go to option Z to make it happen. We don’t want to lose [out on playing] the Lions series, we feel we deserve to play against them. I want to, Jacques [Nienaber] wants to, the players want to, so from our side we’ll do anything."
South Africa haven't played since defeating England in the 2019 World Cup final.
"The frustration is unbelievable," Erasmus said, "but we know we can’t compare that to how devastating the impact of this pandemic has been, and how people have suffered.
"But, yes, we will explore any option to play the Lions, we will play next year, we will play over there. This is the view from a player and management perspective."
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