Toby Flood kicked three last-quarter penalties as Leicester rallied to beat Gloucester 22-17 in Friday's Premiership clash at Kingsholm.
Toby Flood kicked three last-quarter penalties as Leicester rallied to beat Gloucester 22-17 in an enthralling Premiership clash at Kingsholm on Friday.
Despite outscoring their opponents two tries to one, Gloucester were undone by poor discipline, conceding 18 points from penalties which ultimately sealed their fate.
Leicester went into the game beset by no less than 15 injuries, and fell behind to a Freddie Burns try just eight minutes into the game. Toby Flood's pass was intercepted by Burns, who raced half the length of the field to atone for an earlier penalty miss, much to the annoyance of the England fly-half as the referee Greg Garner had only just shouted “advantage over” when he threw his pass.
The visitors kept in touch through the boot of Flood, who converted two penalties as Gloucester were penalised at both the scrum and the line-out.
For all of the host's hard work, they fell behind to a superb Leicester try from Dan Bowden. Gloucester lost yet another scrum from their own feed, which allowed Ben Youngs to start a move which would eventually lead to Bowden charging over under the posts.
Nigel Davies's men looked to be going in at the break six points down, and had it not been for a try by winger Jonny May, they would have done. Henry Trinder spotted a gap in behind the Tigers defence, pumping a superb kick up the pitch which May gleefully picked up to race clear.
After Rob Cook had missed two successive penalties, Billy Twelvetrees stepped up to finally extend the home side's lead to four with a penalty.
The second half turned into a rather scrappy affair, with few clear cut chances for either side.
Flood's penalty in front of the posts meant Leicester trailed by just one with 15 minutes left on the clock. Blaine Scully almost gave Leicester the lead, as the Tigers created an overlap on the right, only for the American to be denied a few metres short, as the Cherry and Whites just held on to their slim lead.
That lead was gone soon after though; a penalty from Flood helped the Tigers sneak into the lead.
Five minutes later, it was the final nail in the coffin for Gloucester, with Flood knocking over his fifth penalty to seal a narrow win.
Tries: Burns, May
Cons: Burns, Cook
Pens: Flood 5
Gloucester: 15 Rob Cook, 14 Shane Monahan, 13 Henry Trinder, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 Jonny May, 10 Freddie Burns, 9 Dan Robson, 8 Ben Morgan, 7 Matt Kvesic, 6 Tom Savage (c), 5 James Hudson, 4 Lua Lokotui, 3 Shaun Knight, 2 Darren Dawidiuk, 1 Nick Wood.
Replacements: 16 Huia Edmonds, 17 Yann Thomas, 18 Rupert Harden, 19 Elliott Stooke, 20 Matt Cox, 21 Jimmy Cowan, 22 Mike Tindall, 23 Martyn Thomas.
Leicester: 15 Scott Hamilton, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 Adam Thompstone, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Miles Benjamin, 10 Toby Flood (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Jamie Gibson, 5 Graham Kitchener, 4 Louis Deacon, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Marcos Ayerza.
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Fraser Balmain, 19 Sebastian De Chaves, 20 Jordan Crane, 21 Sam Harrison, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Javiah Pohe.
Referee: Greg Garner
Assistant referees: Paul Burton, Gareth Copsey
TMO: Trevor Fisher