Planet Rugby

Leicester lash Leeds

25th September 2010 17:12

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Alesana Tuilagi of Leicester Tigers celebrates

Two tries: Alesana Tuilagi

Leicester Tigers produced their best performance of the season in the Aviva Premiership to overwhelm basement side Leeds Carnegie 48-6 at Welford Road.

The reigning champions went over for a raft of tries as Leeds were given a lesson in forward play.

Leicester were forced to start with young centre Billy Twelvetrees at fly-half after Jeremy Staunton joined England number 10 Toby Flood on the injury list with an Achilles problem.

But the Tigers managed to bring England internationals Dan Cole and Dan Hipkiss back into action.

Meanwhile, Leeds boss Neil Back made three changes to the side beaten by Saracens at Headingley last week.

Former Welford Road favourite Back would have known to prepare his team for a serious test up front.

But the Leeds pack, who had performed well last season, had no answer to a Leicester eight revived after two away defeats and the one comeback win over new boys Exeter Chiefs this month.

By the interval, Leicester were in a commanding position, having dominated the set-piece and hammered the Yorkshiremen with four tries to secure a bonus point.

Leeds actually led first when fly-half Ceiron Thomas booted a penalty. But it was the calm before the storm as the Tigers roared.

Wing Scott Hamilton got the score rolling for the hosts as he was set up for a simple touchdown on the left by centre Matt Smith.

Then, after five scrums on the Leeds line and with the visiting pack creaking, one big push on scrum number six saw the drive come on and number eight Thomas Waldrom pounce.

Leeds did threaten when they attacked in the Tigers 22, which saw wing Lee Blackett claim for a try in the corner after being tackled by wing Alesana Tuilagi. Referee Chris White denied Leeds but mysteriously awarded them an attacking scrum.

Thomas brought Leeds back to within six points with a second penalty but the resistance did not last.

As Leicester attacked again, the ball found Waldrom on the left who gave it to flanker Tom Croft for the third try.

And the bonus-point try came just before the break when a superb sprint by Twelvetrees saw him pulled down just short of the posts.

The fluent attack went right as Leeds were left floundering when Croft put Tuilagi in at the corner.

The pain continued for Leeds when they returned from the interval as wing Tuilagi went over for his second try following a kick ahead by Scott Hamilton.

And, after Smith was denied a try after a dash down the right, he made no mistake at a straightforward move across the backs from an attacking scrum.

Lock George Skivington pounced for a seventh home touchdown on the hour, and replacement Manu Tuilagi got an eighth and final try.

The only down point for Leicester was that England hooker George Chuter came off early but that looked to be nothing serious.

The scorers:

For Leicester:
Tries:Hamilton, Waldrom, Croft, Tuilagi 2, Smith, Skivington, Tuilagi
Cons: Twelvetrees 4

For Leeds:
Pens: Thomas 2

Leicester: 15 Geordan Murphy (c), 14 Scott Hamilton, 13 Dan Hipkiss, 12 Matt Smith, 11 Alesana Tuilagi, 10 Billy Twelvetrees, 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Thomas Waldrom, 7 Ben Woods, 6 Tom Croft, 5 George Skivington, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Dan Cole, 2 George Chuter, 1 Boris Stankovich.
Replacements: 16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Peter Bucknall, 18 Julian White, 19 Steve Mafi, 20 Craig Newby, 21 James Grindal, 22 Horacio Agulla, 23 Manu Tuilagi.

Leeds: 15 Leigh Hinton, 14 Lee Blackett, 13 James Tincknell, 12 Scott Barrow, 11 Mike Stephenson, 10 Ceiron Thomas, 9 Scott Mathie, 8 Daniel Browne, 7 Hendre Fourie, 6 Rhys Oakley, 5 Marco Wentzel (c), 4 Tom Denton, 3 Juan Gomez, 2 Steve Thompson, 1 Mike MacDonald.
Replacements: 16 Andy Titterell, 17 Gareth Hardy, 18 Phil Swainston, 19 Danny Paul, 20 Sean Hohneck, 21 Warren Fury, 22 Semi Tadulala, 23 Henry Faafili

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