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Geordan Murphy pleased as young Tigers come up trumps

Published 04/11/2016

Freddie Burns led Leicester to a 21-20 win at Bath
Freddie Burns led Leicester to a 21-20 win at Bath

Coach Geordan Murphy was delighted as a youthful Leicester team opened their Anglo-Welsh Cup campaign with a 21-20 win at Bath.

It was the Tigers' first win in the competition for four years after first-half tries from Luke Hamilton and George Catchpole, and 11 points from the boot of Freddie Burns, set them on their path.

"It's a very difficult place to come down and win here," Murphy said.

"For those young guys to grind it out, to stick with it and fight it out to win by one point, it's huge.

"They will take a huge amount from that. They find out what it's like to be a Leicester player, to have that pride and put that passion in and work for each other.

"They are the characteristics that make us a strong side."

Bath threatened to steal the game late on, with tries from Jack Wilson, Jeff Williams and replacement Dan Bowden, but Leicester deservedly held on.

"In attack, we did the things we said we would do," Murphy added.

"We had a pretty simple game plan but Freddy Burns has been a great leader all week and really pulled the trigger out there for us.

"We played in all the right areas. The defence really impressed me though."

Bath coach Tabai Matson conceded that the scoreline did not really reflect the fact that Leicester controlled large parts of the game.

"It was a really pleasing start but we weren't really good enough tonight. The scoreline flattered us a bit," he said.

But he maintained there was plenty to gain from the experience, adding: "There are quite a few learnings from this. It was great to have young guys exposed to this.

"Leicester came and bullied us at the breakdown. That's a great starting point for Monday's review. You've got to be able to compete physically at the breakdown and win the collision contest first.

"They squeezed us from the exit and probably scored their first 15 points from our inability to get out of our 22.

"That part of the field is something we pride ourselves on so it's back to the drawing board a little in that area.

"It was great to see Jack Wilson score though. He only got off the plane (from New Zealand) two days ago."

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