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Brown keen to impress on the field

At the end of a week in which Ben Foden's stag do hit the headlines, England rival Mike Brown is determined keep making news for his performances on the pitch.

Aviva Premiership leaders Harlequins host second-placed Leicester on Saturday knowing victory at The Stoop will secure them a home semi-final. Quiet off the field, Brown is a spiky and ferocious competitor on it and his form this season has been key to Harlequins' Premiership title push.

"I am in the form of my life at the moment," Brown said. "We have a big challenge this weekend. It would be massive to get a home semi-final."

He added: "Leicester had a slow start to the season but they have come back really strongly and they are probably the form team in the Premiership at the moment.

"We beat them at Welford Road earlier in the season and they will be looking to give us some payback. It will be a massive test but we have had some good wins and we are playing good rugby as well."

Brown sees Saturday's showdown as another high-profile occasion to stake his claim for the England full-back jersey, currently held by Foden, ahead of the three-Test summer tour of South Africa.

He added: "I was disappointed I didn't get as much game time as I had hoped for in the Six Nations but it was a good experience.

"Ben and I have a good healthy rivalry. We are good friends and he is a good bloke off the field as well. You need the competition and the rivalry.

"(Coach) Stuart Lancaster has shown he will pick players on form. I just need to keep working on my game, keep playing well and helping Quins do well this season."

Harlequins have Nick Evans back at fly-half while the Tigers, who moved into second place after their bonus point win against Northampton last weekend, will be captained by returning full-back Geordan Murphy.


From Belfast Telegraph