‘We were lucky’ – Cockerill

Date published: September 19 2016

Leicester director of rugby Richard Cockerill believes his side was lucky to claim victory against Newcastle at Kingston Park on Sunday.

Tigers won the Premiership game 14-13 as they held on in a low-scoring match that saw Falcons fly-half Joel Hodgson miss a late drop-goal.

Afterwards, Cockerill admitted they were fortunate to get the four points.

"We did not play very well," he told Leicester's website.

"We put a lot of endeavour and heart into it and worked hard for the result, but we're very disappointed in the performance.

"I thought we had lots of opportunities to manage the game better and do things better, but we did not. We were lucky to come away with the win, there's no getting away from that.

"But the effort the players are putting in is credit to them. Credit to Newcastle too, they played well and they had their opportunities to win it."

He added: "We take the four points – it is four more than we got here last year. But we need to be smarter, make smarter decisions and execute better. We were guilty at times of coughing up ball in key areas when we were putting pressure on the opposition and played ourselves into trouble at times, but we go away with the points.

"In the first half when we are down next to our goalline, we defended hard and stayed in the game. That effort to get back and defend and win the game was great, in the end that probably won the game. We could've lost and we would not have any complaints because we did not play well enough to take Falcons out of the equation.

"It is now nine points from three games, now we have to front up next week and make sure we play better than that."