Planet Rugby

Preview: Leicester v Worcester

06th September 2013 11:42

Share:

SKY_MOBILE Logovi i Mulipola Leicester Tigers

Power: Logovi'i Mulipola

Leicester Tigers will kick off a new season at Welford Road with four new signings in the 23-man squad against Worcester Warriors.

The matchday squad also includes all six Tigers who shared in the British and Irish Lions success in Australia.

With new club captain Toby Flood injured in the pre-season match against Ulster last week, Louis Deacon will lead out the team on home soil for the first match of the new season in his 250th appearance for the club.

Half-backs David Mele and Ryan Lamb make their club debuts, with fellow summer signings Neil Briggs and Owen Williams named among the replacements.

Lions forwards Tom Youngs, Dan Cole, Geoff Parling and Tom Croft are included in the starting line-up, with Ben Youngs and Manu Tuilagi on the bench.

Meanwhile, director of rugby Dean Ryan will hand competitive debuts to five summer signings in Warriors' against Leicester.

Captain Jonathan Thomas, Ignacio Mieres Jeremy Su'a, Mike Williams and Jeremy Becasseau will all start at Welford Road as Dean Ryan takes charge of his first top-flight match in over four years.

There is also a return to action for centre Ravai Fatiaki, who missed much of last season through injury.

He will be partnered in midfield by fellow Fijian Josh Matavesi, with David Lemi, Josh Drauniniu and Chris Pennell completing the backline.

John Andress lines-up alongside Ed Shervington and Becasseau in the front row with Dean Schofield partnering Williams at lock.

Sam Betty and Semisi Taulava complete the back row as Warriors go head-to-head with last season's Aviva Premiership champions.

"We get going on Sunday and we have the challenge of facing Leicester Tigers at Welford Road - but it doesn't get any better than starting there," said Ryan.

"Leicester are champions and Welford Road is not an easy place to go at any time. But I think we will be more excited there than at any other stadium.

"We will gain ten per cent because we are fired up about being at Welford Road and we have a chance.

"That applies to every single game if we are competitive. We have got to be at our best and they have got to take us for granted - and it happens all the time.

"Competitive behaviour is something we have got to get in this club every time we take to the field and that doesn't matter where we are."

Form: Leicester Tigers won their opening clash of the 2011/12 campaign against London Welsh - their first victory on the opening weekend since 2008. The Tigers' only loss in their last eight Aviva Premiership Rugby matches was at Bath, 26-27, on 20 April. Worcester Warriors' solo victory in round one of the Premiership came in 2011 when they defeated Sale at Sixways. The Warriors finished off last season with five straight defeats and have not won away from home in the competition since a visit to London Wasps on New Year's Day 2012. The Tigers have won their last eight matches against Worcester, whilst the Warriors' have never won in eleven previous visits to Welford Road since 1895.

The teams:

Leicester Tigers: 15 Niall Morris, 14 Vereniki Goneva, 13 Anthony Allen, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Ryan Lamb, 9 David Mele, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Tom Croft, 5 Geoff Parling, 4 Louis Deacon (c), 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Logovi'i Mulipola
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Fraser Balmain, 19 Ed Slater, 20 Thomas Waldrom, 21 Ben Youngs, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Manusamoa Tuilagi

Worcester Warriors: 15 Chris Pennell, 14 Josh Drauniniu, 13 Ravai Fatiaki, 12 Josh Matavesi, 11 David Lemi, 10 Ignacio Mieres, 9 Jeremy Su'a, 8 Semisi Taulava, 7 Sam Betty, 6 Jonathan Thomas (C), 5 Dean Schofield, 4 Mike Williams, 3 John Andress, 2 Ed Shervington, 1 Jeremy Becasseau
Replacements: 16 Nick Seymour, 17 Paul Andrew, 18 Rob O'Donnell, 19 Chris Jones, 20 Jake Abbott, 21 Paul Hodgson, 22 Danny Gray, 23 Jon Clarke

Date: Sunday, September 8
Venue: Welford Road
Kick-off: 14.00 BST (13.00 GMT)
Referee: Luke Pearce

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Exeter vs SaleExeter vs Sale Preview
Bath vs WorcesterBath vs Worcester Preview
Wasps vs GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Preview
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Preview
Newcastle vs SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Preview
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Saturday , April 19
Zebre vs EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Preview
Connacht vs MunsterConnacht vs Munster Preview
Sunday , April 20
Cardiff Blues vs ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Preview
Newport Gwent D'gons vs OspreysNewport Gwent D
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Top 14
Friday , April 18
Castres vs MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Preview
Saturday , April 19
Oyonnax vs Toulouse14:55
Perpignan vs Toulon17:00
Grenoble vs Bayonne18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Biarritz vs Brive18:30
Stade Francais vs Bordeaux-Begles20:35
More Top 14 fixtures
Super Rugby
Saturday , April 19
Chiefs vs CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Preview
Waratahs vs BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Preview
Sharks vs CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Preview
Stormers vs LionsStormers vs Lions Preview
Friday , April 25
Blues vs Waratahs17:35
Brumbies vs Chiefs17:40
Sharks vs Highlanders19:10
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Irish 40 - 12 NewcastleLondon Irish vs Newcastle Report
Saturday , April 12
Worcester 33 - 38 ExeterWorcester vs Exeter Report
Leicester 27 - 15 WaspsLeicester vs Wasps Report
Gloucester 17 - 18 BathGloucester vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Benetton Treviso 45 - 27 Newport Gwent D'gonsBenetton Treviso vs Newport Gwent D
Scarlets 27 - 20 ZebreScarlets vs Zebre Report
Munster 5 - 22 GlasgowMunster vs Glasgow Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Bordeaux-Begles 20 - 22 ToulonBordeaux-Begles vs Toulon Report
Toulouse 16 - 9 BriveToulouse vs Brive Report
Grenoble 30 - 36 Montpellier
Perpignan 22 - 12 Oyonnax
Racing Metro Paris 37 - 7 Biarritz
Bayonne 24 - 19 Stade Francais
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 22 - 16 Melbourne RebelsChiefs vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Lions 12 - 25 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
Cheetahs 31 - 52 CrusadersCheetahs vs Crusaders Report
Western Force 28 - 16 WaratahsWestern Force vs Waratahs Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 11
Sale Sharks 12 - 27 HarlequinsSale Sharks vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Ulster 58 - 12 ConnachtUlster vs Connacht Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Leicester Tigers2064
4Bath1959
5Harlequins2058