Tigers get the better of Wasps

Date published: November 1 2015

Leicester Tigers continued their impressive start to the new Premiership season with a 24-16 victory over Wasps at Welford Road on Sunday.

Richard Cockerill's side's unbeaten spell rumbles on thanks to tries from Vereniki Goneva and Telusa Veainu.

Wasps went over with two minutes to spare through Lorenzo Cittadini, but it wasn't enough to secure a bonus point.

Coming in on the back of a six game unbeaten streak in the Premiership, Leicester started this one in perfect style, going over for the only try of the first 40 just six minutes in. Goneva, out on the left hand side, found space for himself and side stepped a couple of challenges as he crossed the line, allowing Owen Williams to kick through the conversion.

With just a few minutes on the board, Tigers had a 7-0 lead. That was cut back almost from the restart, as Jimmy Gopperth made no mistake from his first penalty of the afternoon, though Williams could have restored that seven point gap only to fire a kick wide of the sticks. Not that he let that miss affect him, slotting a straight forward penalty through just a minute after.

In a 35 minute spell dominated by kickers, Williams again sent through a kick after the visitors were penalised for not rolling away as Tigers increased their lead to 10. Elliot Daly reduced that again though with a perfectly struck kick from all of 50 metres.

Gopperth's second three pointer of the afternoon cut the gap down to just four.

Wasps thought they'd turned the game around when Frank Halai went over in the right hand corner, but TMO interference cut those celebrations short, ruling the try out for crossing over as Leicester edged into half-time in front.

Williams started the scoring for the second half as he maintained a decent sized gap between the sides.

Wasps' task was made tougher after the yellow card shown to Gopperth, and Tigers made him pay as they went over for a game sealing second. Veainu – on his debut – grabbed it, going over on the right after quick handling saw the Tongan make a big impact off the bench. Williams' conversion went wide but the lead was up to 12 as Tigers grabbed hold of the game.

The kicker was given yet another chance to increase that lead and did so through another penalty, Leicester holding a 15 point lead with just 10 minutes remaining.

Wasps did have their first try with two minutes of the game remaining, Cittadini going over to reignite hopes of a losing bonus point, with Ruaridh Jackson kicking through to reduce the gap to eight points. But it came too late and Leicester made it three wins from three as Wasps didn't take any points home.

The scorers:

For Leicester:
Tries: Goneva, Veainu
Con: Williams
Pen: Williams 4

For Wasps:
Try: Cittadini
Con: Jackson
Pen: Daly, Gopperth 2

Leicester: 15 Mathew Tait (c), 14 Adam Thompstone, 13 Peter Betham, 12 Matt Smith, 11 Vereniki Goneva, 10 Owen Williams, 9 Sam Harrison, 8 Opeti Fonua, 7 Lachlan McCaffrey, 6 Tom Croft, 5 Mike Fitzgerald, 4 Mike Williams, 3 Dan Cole, 2 Tom Youngs, 1 Fraser Balmain.
Replacements: 16 Greg Bateman, 17 Logovi'i Mulipola, 18 Tiziano Pasquali, 19 Dom Barrow, 20 Jordan Crane, 21 Jono Kitto, 22 Seremaia Bai, 23 Telusa Veainu.

Wasps: 15 Ruaridh Jackson, 14 Christian Wade, 13 Elliot Daly, 12 James Downey, 11 Frank Halai, 10 Jimmy Gopperth, 9 Dan Robson, 8 Nathan Hughes, 7 George Smith, 6 James Haskell (c), 5 Kearnan Myall, 4 Joe Launchbury, 3 Jake Cooper-Woolley, 2 Carlo Festuccia, 1 Matt Mullan.
Replacements: 16 Ashley Johnson, 17 Tom Bristow, 18 Lorenzo Cittadini, 19 Bradley Davies, 20 Guy Thompson, 21 Joe Simpson, 22 Alex Lozowski, 23 Sailosi Tagicakibau.

Referee: Tim Wigglesworth
Assistant referees: Ross Campbell, Simon Harding
Television match official: Stuart Terheege
Timekeeper: Paul Stanley
Assessor: Brian Campsall