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Hill rues yellow card

Worcester boss Richard Hill was once again left to curse a case of the yellow peril after his team were denied victory over new Aviva Premiership pace-setters Leicester.

Tigers' 19-14 success, secured through the help of two penalty tries, took them top of the league above long-time leaders Harlequins, but Worcester's 11th yellow card of the Premiership season - two more than any other club - contributed heavily to their downfall.

Warriors' former Leicester fly-half Andy Goode was sin-binned just before half-time for dropping his knee on Tigers wing Scott Hamilton as the New Zealander scored a try, and Hill said: "I can't wave a magic wand, unfortunately, and suddenly our penalty count goes below 10 a game and we get no yellow cards."

He added: "Over the next few weeks, it will be a process which we have got to keep going through. If we are still repeating the same offences in four to six weeks' time, then I have got to get the big stick out.

"We are being penalised, and we have just got to cut it out. It will be a hard-line approach to it. I've done the softly, softly."

With Goode still off the field, stand-in kicker Chris Pennell missed two penalty chances that Goode would probably have taken and possibly won the game.

Hill added: "The crucial moment was the Andy Goode sin-binning. I am convinced if Andy had been on we'd have slotted those two penalties over. It was a key blow. Yet again, we found ourselves down to 14 men. It probably cost us the game - the small margins are crucial."

Leicester rugby director Richard Cockerill admitted his team had to dig deep for their sixth successive victory in all competitions.

"Worcester played exceptionally well - we were outplayed in the first-half," he said. "The try just before half-time really picked us up, but if Worcester had won tonight I don't think we could have had any complaints.

"We kept our composure after half-time, and luck was on our side in some ways. We needed to chase the game to try to win, and the effort from our lads to play for 80 minutes was massive. We didn't panic at half-time. We needed to have the ball and control it, and we knew we would get opportunities. It is a good win."


From Belfast Telegraph