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Chiefs no match for Tigers

29th September 2012 16:17

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Vereniki Goneva

On the charge: Vereniki Goneva

Leicester Tigers bounced back from their defeat to Harlequins with a 30-8 victory over Exeter at Welford Road on Saturday.

Adam Thompstone claimed a hat-rick of tries on his first start for the club as the Tigers mauled the Chiefs.

Ignacio Mieres did get the visitors on the scoreboard early on with a penalty from in front of the posts but it wasn't long before the Leicester pack began to take the game by the scruff of the neck.

The Tigers' forwards were dominant in the scrum, at the lineout and in the loose in the first half but it was the backs who provided the cutting edge for the only try of the opening period.

A strong run from Fijian winger Vereniki Goneva laid the foundations for Toby Flood to spin the ball wide and Thompstone dived over in the right-hand corner to score his first try for the club.

Flood added the conversion and three penalties as the half wore on, with the Chiefs guilty of giving away a succession of penalties as they were forced onto the back foot, and Leicester took a 16-3 lead into the interval.

The Tigers were in no mood to relent in the second half either and the former London Irish winger Thompstone grabbed his second try of the match five minutes after the restart.

Mieres fumbled the ball on his own try-line after a poor pass from Haydn Thomas and Flood flicked the ball up to Matt Smith with his boot, allowing the centre to release Dan Bowden and then Thompstone to stroll over untouched.

The pressure being exerted by the hosts was almost incessant and, after Logovi'i Mulipola butchered a fantastic opportunity in the left-hand corner, a third try duly arrived with just under quarter of an hour left to play.

Flood released Smith again on the right-hand side and the 26-year-old's grubber kick through the defensive line was perfectly weighted for Thompstone to race onto and complete his hat-trick.

Leicester were unable to find the bonus point try that their domination arguably deserved and Exeter even snatched a consolation try with the last play of the game as replacement Ben White dived over from short range.

There was never any doubt about the result though as the Tigers bounced back from their defeat to champions Harlequins last week to inflict the Chiefs' third defeat of the season in comprehensive fashion.

The scorers:

For Leicester:

Tries: Thompstone 3

Cons: Flood 3

Pens: Flood 3

For Exeter:

Tries: White

Pen: Mieres

Leicester: 15 Scott Hamilton, 14 Niall Morris, 13 Matt Smith, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Vereniki Goneva, 10 Toby Flood, 9 Sam Harrison, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Jordan Crane (c), 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Graham Kitchener, 3 Dan Cole, 2 George Chuter, 1 Logovi'i Mulipola.
Replacements: 16 Tom Youngs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Martin Castrogiovanni, 19 Ed Slater, 20 Brett Deacon, 21 Patrick Phibbs, 22 George Ford, 23 Adam Thompstone.

Exeter: 15 Luke Arscott, 14 Ian Whitten, 13 Sireli Naqelevuki, 12 Jason Shoemark, 11 Matt Jess, 10 Ignacio Mieres, 9 Haydn Thomas, 8 Richard Baxter, 7 James Scaysbrook, 6 Tom Johnson, 5 James Hanks, 4 Tom Hayes (c), 3 Carl Rimmer, 2 Chris Whitehead, 1 Brett Sturgess.
Replacements: 16 Simon Alcott, 17 Ben Moon, 18 Chris Budgen, 19 Aly Muldowney, 20 Ben White, 21 Will Chudley, 22 Gareth Steenson, 23 Phil Dollman.

Referee: Tim Wigglesworth

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