Planet Rugby

Leicester back to winning ways

19th November 2010 22:31

Share:

Billy Twelvetrees Leicester

Twelvetrees: Kicks Tigers to victory

An under-strength Leicester produced an efficient display to beat Aviva Premiership rivals Harlequins 18-13 at Welford Road and end a run of four straight defeats.

Shorn of a host of their international stars, the Tigers struggled to get going early on and were fortunate not to find themselves trailing by more than a couple of Nick Evans penalties.

Quins would pay for their profligacy as man-of-the-match Billy Twelvetrees led a Leicester revival, the young fly-half kicking three penlaties in each half to put his side on top.

The visitors did manage to secure a losing bonus point through Tom Williams' late converted try, but the Londoners will be left to rue a stack of missed opportunities as Leicester ground out a typically gritty home victory.

Without the services of no fewer than five props, Leicester were always likely to be up against it at the set-piece and their problems were exposed in the first minute.

Their front-row having disengaged at the scrum, Evans was presented with a penalty chance that he slotted to give the visitors the ideal start.

The Quins fly-half extended the lead with another penalty on 10 minutes after his kick, chase and tackle on the retreating James Grindal had given his side a platform with a line-out.

Quins continued to dominate the play, asking questions of Leicester's defence both up front and through their backs.

The subdued home crowd finally found their voices on 21 minutes after a rampaging run from powerful teenage wing Manu Tuilagi, who crashed through three tacklers before being stopped.

They were given something to cheer when veteran Julian White, making his first Premiership start of the season, got one over opposite number Ceri Jones at the scrum to earn Leicester a penalty that Twelvetrees kicked.

Quins then had a golden chance to make their supremacy pay following a fine break from number eight Tom Guest but, with options either side, his inside pass to Evans was somehow fumbled by the fly-half with a clear run to the line beckoning.

It was to prove costly as Twelvetrees brought his side level with his second penalty after Chris Robshaw was pinged and then edged them ahead at the interval, as he demonstrated his monster kicking range with a penalty from inside his own half that sailed well over the posts.

Further indiscipline from Quins was then to fatally undermine their hopes as they made an awful start to the second period, offering Twelvetrees three further shots at goal inside eight minutes that he gobbled up.

Robshaw was the first to be penalised for using hands in the ruck and just two minutes later Joe Gray was caught offside, allowing Twelvetrees to boom over another hugely impressive strike from inside his own half.

The Quins pack were again at fault soon after as they failed to move away and Twelvetrees, cheered on by the Tigers faithful, needed no second invitation to take aim at goal and open an 18-6 lead.

It could have been even worse for the visitors as James Johnson was pulled up by referee Wayne Barnes on 52 minutes, but Twelvetrees finally blotted his copybook by pulling his seventh attempt across the posts and just wide.

But bad news for the hosts arrived in the form of an injury to substitute Geoff Parling, the lock - who had only just returned from a neck problem - carried off with a serious-looking injury to his knee.

Quins regrouped and looked set for the score to get them back in the game and, having wasted a couple of promising situations, were left frustrated in the 76th minute as Mike Brown saw a try chalked off, correctly, for a forward pass.

They did finally breach the Leicester line with two minutes to go when Evans popped up a neat pass to Williams who scampered over out wide.

But while Evans slotted the conversion to bring them within five, their desperate last-ditch attempts to conjure a second try came to nothing as Leicester closed out the game.

The scorers:

For Leicester Tigers:
Pens: Twelvetrees 6

For Harlequins:
Try: Williams
Con: Evans
Pens: Evans 2

Leicester Tigers: 15 Geordan Murphy (c), 14 Scott Hamilton, 13 Matt Smith, 12 Anthony Allen, 11 Manu Tuilagi, 10 Billy Twelvetrees, 9 James Grindal, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Craig Newby, 6 Thomas Waldrom, 5 George Skivington, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Julian White, 2 George Chuter, 1 Peter Bucknall.
Replacements: 16 Rob Hawkins, 17 Fraser Balmain, 18 Ryan Bower, 19 Steve Mafi, 20 Geoff Parling, 21 Jason Spice, 22 George Ford, 23 Lee Robinson.

Harlequins: 15 Mike Brown, 14 George Lowe, 13 Ollie Smith, 12 Jordan Turner-Hall, 11 Tom Williams, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Karl Dickson, 8 Tom Guest, 7 Will Skinner, 6 Chris Robshaw (capt), 5 George Robson, 4 Tomas Vallejos, 3 James Johnston, 2 Joe Gray, 1 Ceri Jones.
Replacements: 16 Chris Brooker, 17 Mark Lambert, 18 John Andress, 19 Ollie Kohn, 20 Maurie Fa'asavalu, 21 Dave Moore, 22 Benjamin Urdapilleta, 23 Ross Chisholm.

Referee: Wayne Barnes

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins vs LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Preview
Saturday , April 19
Exeter vs Sale15:00
Bath vs Worcester15:00
Wasps vs Gloucester15:15
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London Irish14:00
Newcastle vs Saracens15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Friday , April 18
Leinster vs Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Preview
Glasgow vs UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Preview
Saturday , April 19
Zebre vs Edinburgh14:30
Connacht vs Munster18:15
Sunday , April 20
Cardiff Blues vs Scarlets14:00
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Ospreys16:45
More RaboDirect PRO12 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
Biarritz vs Brive18:30
Racing Metro Paris vs Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Preview
Stade Francais vs Bordeaux-Begles20:35
More Top 14 fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 18
Hurricanes vs BluesHurricanes vs Blues Preview
Melbourne Rebels vs Western ForceMelbourne Rebels vs Western Force Preview
Saturday , April 19
Chiefs vs CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Preview
Waratahs vs Bulls19:00
Sharks vs Cheetahs15:00
Stormers vs Lions17:05
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
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
Bayonne 24 - 19 Stade Francais
Racing Metro Paris 37 - 7 Biarritz
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 22 - 16 Melbourne RebelsChiefs vs Melbourne Rebels Report
Western Force 28 - 16 WaratahsWestern Force vs Waratahs Report
Lions 12 - 25 SharksLions vs Sharks Report
Cheetahs 31 - 52 CrusadersCheetahs vs Crusaders 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
Edinburgh 22 - 29 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
Ospreys 25 - 19 LeinsterOspreys vs Leinster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Clermont Auvergne 23 - 11 CastresClermont Auvergne vs Castres Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Highlanders 27 - 20 BullsHighlanders vs Bulls Report
Reds 20 - 23 BrumbiesReds vs Brumbies Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Leicester Tigers1963
4Bath1959
5Harlequins1954