Planet Rugby

Tigers maul Northampton

30th March 2013 16:58

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Manu Tuilagi scored two of Leicester's four tries as the Tigers hammered Northampton 36-8 at Franklin's Gardens on Saturday.

Leicester produced a superb second-half performance following an evenly contested first period to comfortably claim victory.

Hosts Northampton had enjoyed a thrilling victory over Wasps a week earlier, while Leicester were narrow winners away at Exeter.

A slow start to the game saw all 15 points scored in the first half come from the boot, and it was the Tigers who enjoyed the lion's share.

Toby Flood's penalty put Leicester in front but the lead was quickly cancelled out by Stephen Myler's effort. But Flood punished more indiscipline from the hosts in the 30 minutes that followed, striking three further penalty goals to make it 3-12 at half-time.

Courtney Lawes was sin-binned for Northampton in the first half for a deliberate knock-on, but despite the nine-point gap, the tie remained finely poised.

The second half was a different story, however, as four tries from the visitors extinguished any hope of a Northampton fightback.

Tuilaga crossed just after the restart following good handling from Marcos Ayerza and Jordan Crane to put Leicester 3-17 in front and, though Myler gave the hosts hope with an unconverted try just shy of the hour, three further scores in the final 20 minutes from Leicester took the game away from the Saints.

Tuilagi grabbed his second on 61 minutes after Thomas Waldrom had gone close, and ten minutes later Niall Morris struck to settle the contest.

Matthew Tait's try less than five minutes later rubbed salt in the wounds, and, though Northampton showed enterprise with the ball in hand, it was too little, too late.

The scorers:

For Northampton:
Try: Myler
Pens: Myler
Yellow card: Lawes

For Leicester :
Tries: Tuilagi 2, Morris, Tait
Cons: Flood 2
Pens: Flood 4
Yellow card: Morris

Northampton Saints: 15 Ben Foden, 14 James Wilson, 13 George Pisi, 12 Tom May, 11 Jamie Elliott, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Tom Wood, 7 Phil Dowson, 6 Samu Manoa, 5 Christian Day, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Tom Mercey, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Soane Tonga'uiha.
Replacements:16 Ross McMillan, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Brian Mujati, 19 GJ van Velze, 20 Ben Nutley, 21 Martin Roberts, 22 Ryan Lamb, 23 Luther Burrell.

Leicester Tigers: 15 Mathew Tait, 14 Niall Morris, 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi, 12 Anthony Allen, 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Toby Flood (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Tom Croft, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Marcos Ayerza.
Replacements:16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Logovi'i Mulipola, 18 Martin Castrogiovanni, 19 Thomas Waldrom, 20 Graham Kitchener, 21 Sam Harrison, 22 George Ford, 23 Matt Smith.

Venue: Franklin's Gardens
Referee: Wayne Barnes
Assistant referees: Robin Goodliffe and Roy Maybank
TMO: David Grashoff

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