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Saints claim draw at Welford Road

05th October 2013 17:11

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Ed Slater Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints

Winning try: Ed Slater

Leicester flank Ed Slater scored a late try to help Tigers save a dramatic draw against Northampton at Welford Road on Saturday.

In a game between two contenders for the Premiership title, the first half proved to be a scrappy affair with the boots of the respective fly-halves dominating proceedings.

Stephen Myler kicked three penalties to Toby Flood's two as Northampton took a 9-6 lead into the interval.

Alex Corbisiero then touched down and the fly-halves traded penalties as the Saints led 19-9 with 14 minutes to go.

But, after Flood had kicked his fourth three-pointer, Slater crossed the whitewash to snatch the draw.

These teams went into this game level on points and the opening was unsurprisingly tight. Leicester started the brighter but it was Northampton who took the lead when Myler kicked a penalty before Flood levelled matters on 15 minutes - after Luther Burrell had been-binned for a dangerous tackle.

But the Saints reacted well to being down to 14 men and successive three-pointers from their fly-half duly gave them a 9-3 advantage.

However, the Tigers' England international pivot reduced the arrears at the interval with his second from the tee.

Despite the tight scoreline, Northampton were the more composed in possession and they were rewarded for their patience early in the second period.

A number of phases had elapsed when Corbisiero powered across the whitewash from close range for a potentially crucial score.

Flood and Myler then traded penalties as the Saints remained 10 points in front before Louis Deacon and Courtney Lawes were yellow carded for either side.

But it was Leicester who began to assert their authority and the hosts' fly-half took them to within losing bonus-point territory with a three-pointer.

And it was no surprise to see that pressure eventually tell on the Saints' rearguard as Slater powered over the line. Flood converted a simple opportunity to equalise and end a dramatic game.

For Leicester:
Try: Slater
Con: Flood
Pens: Flood 4
Yellow cards: Deacon

For Northampton Saints:
Try: Corbisiero
Con: Myler
Pens: Myler 4
Yellow cards: Burrell, Lawes

Leicester: 15 Niall Morris, 14 Blaine Scully, 13 Vereniki Goneva, 12 Anthony Allen, 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Toby Flood (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Julian Salvi, 6 Ed Slater, 5 Graham Kitchener, 4 Louis Deacon, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Logovi'i Mulipola.
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 Boris Stankovich, 18 Fraser Balmain, 19 Sebastian de Chaves , 20 Jamie Gibson, 21 Sam Harrison, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Dan Bowden.

Northampton Saints: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Jamie Elliott, 13 George Pisi, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 George North, 10 Stephen Myler, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Sam Dickinson, 7 Phil Dowson, 6 Tom Wood, 5 Samu Manoa, 4 Courtney Lawes, 3 Tom Mercey, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Alex Corbisiero.
Replacements: 16 Mike Haywood, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 GJ Van Velze, 20 Calum Clark, 21 Kahn Fotuali'i, 22 James Wilson, 23 Ken Pisi.

Venue: Welford Road
Referee: J P Doyle
Assistant referees : Paul Dix and Robin Goodliffe
TMO: David Grashoff

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