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Match report | Euro hat-trick for Tigers

Leicester Tigers scored nine tries in a 59-7 victory over Rugby Calvisano to retain top spot in Pool 5 of the European Challenge Cup at Welford Road on Saturday.

A try bonus point was secured inside 20 minutes with an early score from Manu Tuilagi followed by two from fellow England international Jonny May and another from man-of-the-match award winner Sam Lewis – his first in club colours.

Tommy Reffell, Adam Thompstone and Jake Kerr added further tries as Tigers led 45-7 on the hour on the way to a 25th victory over Italian opposition in the club’s history.

Noel Reid dotted down an eighth try and then Telusa Veainu added another in the final minute as Tigers became the first English team to win the opening three rounds in the Challenge Cup since 2002.

Following a minute’s applause in memory of the club’s record appearance-holder David Matthews, Tigers got on the scoreboard with just three minutes played through Tuilagi.

They had already broken the defensive line once when Sam Lewis carried into the 22 and then at the next attack, starting with a lineout on the right, Tuilagi burst through one tackle and had the strength to push on for the line to the right of the posts. Ford’s conversion made it 7-0.

A second try followed just two-and-a half minutes later when a long pass from Noel Reid gave May space to run on the left and no defender got near him on a 60-metre run-in to score his first of the season. Ford’s kick from the left touchline sailed across the posts with Tigers 12-0 in front.

May was back on the attack shortly afterwards after Reid started a run from deep and claimed his second try on 11 minutes after superb hands from Reid and an offload from Steward gave him the chance. This time Ford added the kick to make it 19-0.

Turnover ball on halfway got Tigers going forward again and, after Tuilagi had taken play up the right, Lewis ran in for the bonus-point score with just 16 minutes elapsed. Ford’s kick stretched the advantage to 26 points.

Calvisano built their first attack as the game reached the 20-minute mark and had men spare out wide on the left only to misplace the pass.

Lewis almost found his way to the line a second time after linking up with May and then latching on to loose ball 20 metres out. But, after stepping past the first defender, he was taken down just short of the line and spilled ball as he looked for an offload.

Telusa Veainu, back in the squad after a broken nose in the win over Gloucester, replaced Tuilagi, with 19-year-old Steward moving into midfield alongside Reid.

May was denied a hat-trick as he found some space on the left again and chipped ahead. Although the Calvisano player got his hand to the kick, the ball still travelled up to the tryline but May knocked-on as he skidded on to it.

Tigers elected to go to a scrum just 15 metres out from the posts after a penalty award from referee Craig Evans and heard the whistle again at the set-piece but lost ball in contact on the right as Veainu tried to wriggle free.

A penalty against Sione Kalamafoni at a breakdown just inside the Tigers half gave the visitors a chance to kick into the corner. They over-shot their throw but managed to get ball back and, after two pushes near the line, prop Lorenzo Cittadini inched over to score with just seconds left in the half. The conversion kick from fly-half Paolo Pescetto brought the half to a close with Tigers 26-7 ahead.

Tigers claimed the first points after the restart, with Reffell timing his run on to a pass from Reid in midfield and burst through to score the fifth try of the day, converted by Ford for a 33-7 lead.

A break from Ford should have brought another chance but the Italian defence quickly rallied to stop Calum Green and then Sione Kalamafoni in support before Sam Harrison joined the action in a record 100th appearance from the bench for the club.

A penalty for obstruction gave Calvisano a rare attacking opportunity as they kicked down the right, but Tigers stole ball and then won a penalty of their own for a shoulder-charge at the contact area.

Ford’s day was completed on 50 minutes, with Tom Hardwick the replacement as he was straight into the game as May found a gap near halfway and Kalamafoni charged on in support before being stopped 20 metres out. The attackers were penalised at the breakdown, though, and Calvisano had brief respite with possession in midfield until Thompstone picked off a pass near the touchline and ran away to score.

Calvisano held ball near the Tigers tryline through several phases but were repelled by strong defence and then lost control in contact and play restarted with a scrum for the home team.

Two carries from Nephi Leatigaga threatened the Italian line and when Tigers set up a close-range maul, Jake Kerr steered it over for try number seven and Hardwick converted for a 45-7 lead.

The defence had to stand up to a driving maul which took play right up to the tryline before Tigers stole possession and then created an eighth try. This time, Hardwick broke a tackle on the halfway line and ran clear, looking for the support of Reid to beat the defence and go under the posts. Hardwick added the extras.

There was still time for Veainu to score after smart work along the backline from deep and the Tonga international beat the covering defence with a run-in down the right touchline. Hardwick's conversion brought the game to a close.

Match Details

HT ScoreHalf Time Score

LEI 26-7 CAL

FT ScoreFull Time Score

LEI 59-7 CAL

Attendance

15,073

Referee

Craig Evans

Match Stats

Leicester Tigers
Rugby Calvisano
Possession
90%
10%
Penalties Conceded
6
9
Yellow Cards
0
0
Red Cards
0
0
Tackles Won
132/147 90%
118/156 76%
Scrums Won
8/8 100%
11/11 100%
Lineouts Won
12/14 86%
12/16 75%

Player Stats

Leicester Tigers
Rugby Calvisano
Leicester Tigers
TCDP
15Freddie Steward
141T
13Manu Tuilagi1T
12Noel Reid1T
11Jonny May2T
10George Ford4C
9Ben Youngs
1Facundo Gigena
2Tom Youngs
3Dan Cole
4Sam Lewis1T
5Calum Green
6Jordan Coghlan
7Tommy Reffell1T
8Sione Kalamafoni
16Jake Kerr1T
17Nephi Leatigaga
18Joe Heyes
19
20
21
22Tom Hardwick3C
23Telusa Veainu1T
Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
59

Full Time

Rugby Calvisano
Rugby Calvisano
7
Leicester Tigers
T
C
T
T
C
T
C
T
C
T
T
C
T
C
T
C
KOHTFT
Rugby Calvisano
T
C

Commentary

80

THANKS FOR YOUR SUPPORT

Thank you to the members of the Tigers Family who joined us at Welford Road this afternoon, and to those who have followed our Matchday Live coverage from elsewhere.

See you next Saturday (December 14) for the return fixture with Calvisano in Round 4 of the European Challenge Cup.

Until then, goodbye.

FULL TIME | 59-7

Tigers put nine past Calvisano to keep up their European record in 2019/20. That's three wins from three.

LAST-MINUTE CONVERSION

Hardwick splits the uprights with another last-minute conversion - but there's slightly more pressure on this one! And that's the game.

GAS FROM TELUSA

The ball is neatly worked out to the right, where Veainu burns the last man to sprint in for try number nine on the stroke of full time.

78

TIGERS CUB PICKS UP MAN OF THE MATCH

That moment when a cub becomes a man (of the match) ... Sam Lewis is announced as this afternoon's standout player, to a cheer from the supporters at Welford Road.

76

'SEALING OFF'

Calvisano give away a cheap penalty of their own on the 22, and Hardwick kicks to the corner as his forward pack eye a ninth score.

KICK IS GOOD

Two more points from Hardwick's boot break through the half-century for Leicester, who now lead 52 points to seven.

REID RUNS IN

Hardwick breaks the line, looks for support, and finds partner in crime Noel Reid, who runs in for Tigers' eighth try of the game.

71

LEWIS CLIMBS HIGHEST

Sam Lewis has been everywhere this afternoon, and he's hoisted into the air to steal the Calvisano throw.

70

TURNOVER!

... but the pressure is relieved when the ball is turned over in the maul, and we'll go back for a second lineout.

FINAL CHANGE

Calvisano empty their bench as Alberto Chiesa takes the place of fly-half Pescetto.

69

SCRUM PENALTY

Tigers give away a cheap scrum penalty for playing the ball in the tunnel, and Calvisano will try and capitalise with a kick to the corner.

PAIR OF CHANGES

Gabriele Venditti and Antonio Barducci join the game, in place of Andrea Zambonin and former Tiger Brugnara.

TIGERS CHANGE

Head coach Geordan Murphy swaps one experienced head for another, as Guy Thompson replaces Calum Green.

TWO FROM THE TEE

Hardwick's conversion is good, and takes the scores to 45 points to seven.

KERR RUMBLES OVER

Instead, the Tigers forwards set up a maul from the lineout and Jake Kerr is the man to get the ball down over the line.

65

ADVANTAGE ON THE LINE

Tigers push up to the whitewash after another of Boladau's signature runs, taking four defenders with him, and the home side win the advantage after Harrison is taken out at the ruck.

64

DOWN THE FIELD

Tigers are back in the right area of the pitch after a sweet Harrison kick off the set-piece splits the Calvisano backfield.

62

EARLY ENGAGEMENT

Another let-off for the Leicester pack as Calvisano are pinged for an early engagement, and Hardwick can use his surge boot to pin them back almost to halfway.

TWO MORE CALVISANO CHANGES

Federicos Consoli (21) and Mori (23) replace Nicolo Casilio and Jacopo Trulla, respectively.

61

LOST IN CONTACT

Cheers - of relief, more than anything - from the Welford Road crowd as Calvisano cough up the ball in contact, and we'll have another scrum.

Harrison has the feed this time, on Tigers' five-metre line.

CHANGE ON THE HOUR

Calvisano bring Gabrielle Morelli off the bench for hooker Matteo Luccardi.

60

DEFENSIVE SCRUM

Heyes is into the action immediately, with a scrum deep inside Tigers territory. Calvisano pick and go from the base.

FRONT ROW REPLACEMENT

Dan Cole is off the field, with Joe Heyes joining the fray.

BOLADAU FOR COGHLAN

Tigers loanee Ifereimi Boladau takes the place of Jordan Coghlan in the Tigers back row.

57

BACKFIELD PLAY

Veainu scampers back to gobble up a Calvisano kick, and works in tandem with wing May to clear the ball into touch.

CALVISANO CHANGE

Antoine Koffi is on for Calvisano lock Davide Zanetti.

55

MISSED KICK

...but it just curls away in front of the posts.

LOOSEHEAD CHANGE

Nephi Leatigaga replaces Facundo Gigena in the Leicester front row as Tom Hardwick lines up his conversion attempt...

INTERCEPTION TRY!

Adam Thompstone plucks off a loose final pass against the run of play, and runs in from halfway to score.

HARDWICK FOR FORD

George Ford takes the applause from the Welford Road crowd, and his afternoon is done. He's replaced by Tom Hardwick at fly-half.

51

TIGERS TAKE THEIR TIME

Tigers have really taken the game by the scruff of the neck in this second half, and roll up to the next lineout slowly, before Kalamafoni turns it up to 11 as he bursts through the middle.

Real to-and-fro stuff, this.

PROP SWAP

Calvisano try-scorer Cittadini is replaced by Piermaria Leso.

100 UP FOR SAMMY

Sam Harrison replaces Ben Youngs at scrum-half to make a century of appearances from the Tigers bench. That's a club record.

48

LATE TACKLE

Calum Green's turn to break through this time, and he frees an arm on the floor to offload to support. But Calvisano hit the man late, and Ford will kick to the corner.

QUICK CONVERSION

Ford's quick conversion adds two more points.

CHANGE AT HOOKER

Jake Kerr is on, in place of Tigers skipper Tom Youngs.

BETWEEN THE STICKS!

Tigers work the ball back into the 22, and Ford holds a nice ball back for Tommy Reffell to score under the posts.

45

STOLEN BALL

The Tigers pack do a good job of pushing against the head, but Calvisano just about dig the ball out from under their feet ... and Jordan Coghlan is there to wrestle Vunisa to the floor, and steal the ball.

43

LINEOUT NOT STRAIGHT

Tigers work the ball up the field, and win a lineout on the five-metre line. But the throw goes awry, and Calvisano opt for a scrum.

41

OUT-THE-BACK OFFLOAD

Steward strides round the corner again, and doubles down with a great offload to Adam Thompstone on the right wing.

BACK UNDERWAY AT WELFORD ROAD

Pescetto gets the second half underway at Welford Road.

40

MATCH ACTION | FORD BARKS HIS ORDERS

Tigers general George Ford marshals his troops during the first half at Welford Road.
 

GettyImages-1192496904 george ford.jpg

HALF TIME | 26-7

A frantic first quarter for Tigers secures the bonus point, but Calvisano have a try of their own to make it 26 points to seven at the break.

HALF-TIME CONVERSION

And, on the stroke of half time, fly-half Paolo Pescetto adds the extras from the tee.

CALVISANO HIT BACK

Calvisano creep up to the line through their forwards, and Italy international Lorenzo Cittadini gets over the line.

37

WRONG WAY!

Calvisano No8 Samu Vunisa breaks from the base of the scrum - just in the knick of time - but goes to the right, and finds no support to back him up.

Tigers are pinged for a technical offence on the floor, though, and so the Italians keep possession of the ball.

35

CONTEST IN THE AIR

And, just as we type that ... Calvisano put up a high ball on halfway, and crowd out May two players to one. The Leicester wing seems to knock on, so we'll have another scrum.

34

CALVISANO CHANGE TACK

Rather than put boot to ball, the visitors instead try to break out of their 22 with ball in hand, but the green wall holds strong. The supporters in The Robin Hood Stand have seen plenty of action in this half!

32

SCRUM AGAIN?

Facundo Gigena wins a scrum penalty against the Calvisano tighthead, but Tigers are judged to have gone too quick with the tap-and-go, and we'll come back for another pushing contest.

30

SWITCH-BACK

More neat play in midfield between Ford and Reid at 10 and 12, with the Irish centre switching the ball back for May to make another couple of metres.

28

KNOCK ON!

May thinks he's through for a hat-trick score, as he nudges the ball past wing Facundo Panceyra-Garrido to dot down beyond the line.

But referee Craig Evans calls for a knock on, and instead we'll restart with a five-metre scrum.

EARLY CHANGE

The scoreboard allows head coach Geordan Murphy to make an early change among his backs, with Telusa Veainu onto the field in place of Manu Tuilagi.

Full-back Steward will move up into the centres.

26

HIGH TACKLE!

Tigers probe the Calvisano defence for more holes in front of the sticks, and Ford offloads to Lewis, who is brought down five metres out, unable to offload to Tommy Reffell.

Calvisano pick up the ball, but Calum Green takes the man high and the visitors have a penalty.

25

QUICK HANDS

Some nice handling from the Tigers backs after another strong scrum, with Ford pulling in Steward and May, with the wing breaking through for another 10 metres down the left.

24

BATTLE AT SET-PIECE

An intriguing battle at scrum-time as World Cup finalist Dan Cole goes head-to-head with former team-mate, and Tigers Academy graduate, Riccardo Brugnara.

22

SCRUM DOWN

After a frantic first quarter, Calvisano now look to slow the pace of the game with their first real possession of the afternoon.

The ball goes out for a Leicester lineout, but the feed to scrum-half Youngs is a difficult take and he just knocks on. Calvisano scrum.

20

DEFENSIVE MODE

Tigers are being tested in defence for the first time in this match, as Calvisano use their heavy runners to press into the home 22. The ball is spilled into touch.

18

NOT THIS TIME

Whoops and hollers from the Terrace as May tries another chip and chase on the lookout for his hat-trick try, but it doesn't come off this time.

TWO MORE POINTS

A simple conversion for try-creator Ford this time, and the lead is stretched to 26 points.

LEFT, RIGHT, LEWIS.

Tigers have a bonus-point score after a quarter of an hour, as George Ford shimmies to the left, then onto his right, and feeds Sam Lewis for a first try in club colours.

14

BIG BOOT!

Calvisano find a bit of space in between full-back Steward and Ben Youngs in the Tigers back-field, but a huge kick from Steward seemingly finds touch in front of the Breedon Terrace.

There's a little bit of confusion from the match officials - without a TMO for this game - as they can't decide if the ball was taken out by the Calvisano player. Instead, we'll restart with a scrum.

CONVERSION GOOD

Ford makes no mistake with the conversion this time around, and that's 19-nil with almost a quarter of the game played.

TRY NUMBER THREE

Another try for May, this time after a brilliant offload from debutant Steward in the elft-hand corner.

10

HEADS-UP RUGBY

Noel Reid finds an outside shoulder on the left, and scans for support as he bursts past two then three Italian defenders. He finds Tommy Reffell, who holds onto the ball in time for support to arrive.

9

CALVISANO KNOCK ON

Another handling error from the visitors, after a neat nudge through from May on the left. Full-back Jacopo Trulla knocks on just beyond the 22, and we'll scrum down deep into in Calvisano territory.

7

CONVERSION WIDE

The touchline conversion attempt drifts in front of the posts, to keep the lead at 12 points to nil.

MAY GALLOPS OVER

Calvisano knock on, and Noel Reid uses the advantage to make a 15-metre miss-pass out to Jonny May, who gallops in from halfway.

AND THE EXTRAS

First kick at goal for George Ford ... and it's over. Tigers lead seven points to nil.

TRY TIME FOR TUILAGI

Sam Lewis takes the ball at the lineout in the Calvisano 22, and it's out to a hard-running Manu Tuilagi who gets over the line for the first score of the match.

1

TIGER CUBS COMBINE

An early aerial test for new full-back Freddie Steward, which he takes brilliantly in front of the Breedon Terrace.

A couple of phases later, the ball is into the hand of fellow Tigers Academy graduate Sam Lewis, who breaks through the Calvisano line on the right. He's brought down after a 30-metre break.

KICK-OFF FROM WELFORD ROAD

George Ford boots the ball into the Leicester sky to get this European fixture underway.

0

FINAL FEW MOMENTS

And, after an emotive minute’s applause, we’re ready to kick off this European Challenge Cup clash at Welford Road. Both teams take their places on the field, and we’re about to get going…

0

DAVID MATTHEWS: THE LEGEND’S LEGEND

Ahead of kick-off, we’re joined by the family of Tigers appearance record-holder David Matthews on the pitch. Rugby Football Union president and Tigers legend Peter Wheeler reads a short tribute to the crowd.

“The world of rugby lost one of its greatest servants with the passing of David Matthews earlier this year, bringing to a close an association with the club which spanned more than 60 years,” he says.

“An inspiration on the pitch and a huge influence off it, we remember his contribution to this great club and we celebrate his achievements today alongside his family, friends and former colleagues.”

And now, for a minute’s applause. Thank you, David

0

FIVE MINUTES TO GO

Both teams head up the tunnel after completing their final warm-ups on the Welford Road turf.

0

CONFIRMED TEAM NEWS

Telusa Veainu returns to the matchday 23 for the first time since the Gallagher Premiership win over Gloucester last month – but he’s kept out of the No15 shirt by 19-year-old Freddie Steward. The development squad full-back earns a debut start at Welford Road, alongside Jonny May and Adam Thompstone in the back-three.

Manu Tuilagi and Noel Reid rekindle their fruitful centre partnership from European Round 1 against Pau, with Rugby World Cup finalists George Ford and Ben Youngs continuing in the half-backs.

Tommy Reffell is the headline returnee to the Tigers back row after a six-week absence, and lines up alongside try-scorer at Cardiff, Jordan Coghlan, and Sione Kalamafoni. Facundo Gigena, skipper Tom Youngs and Dan Cole form a formidable front row ahead of the aforementioned Lewis and Green.

Sam Harrison will earn a century of replacement appearances – a club record – if used from the bench this afternoon.

On the other side of the field, Tigers Academy graduate Riccardo Brugnara returns to Welford Road in the Calvisano front row alongside Italy international Lorenzo Cittadini.

See the full match line-ups by clicking here, or scrolling down on this page.

0

YOUNG SAM SET FOR EUROPEAN ‘OPPORTUNITY’

After impressing in the win at Cardiff last time out in European competition, Sam Lewis is handed a second-ever start at Welford Road this afternoon.

Used on the flank in that game, the Tigers Academy graduate packs down alongside the experienced Calum Green in the Leicester engine room against Calvisano.

“I’ve been keeping my head down and doing what I’ve been practicing all pre-season, so to be handed a chance to do it on the pitch is good for me,” Lewis said.

“The game at Cardiff was about hard work, and working hard for each other. Now, these next two games [against Calvisano] are about taking our opportunities.

“Winning is key, really. A bonus point would be the icing on top.”

You can read more of the 21-year-old’s preview of European Challenge Cup Round 3 right here.

0

DAVID MATTHEWS DAY AT WELFORD ROAD

As well as the latest round of European action, Welford Road will celebrate the achievements and contribution of Leicester Tigers record-holder David Matthews this afternoon.

‘The heart and soul of the club’ and ‘the greatest of Tigers’ are just two of the descriptions attached to David, in recognition of his 65-year association with Leicester. He made 502 first-team appearances and also served as captain, coach, director, president and life member before his death this summer at the age of 82.

Members of David’s family are special guests for this afternoon’s match, and have been presented with a condolence book filled with tributes and memories from players, past-players, supporters and representatives from the rugby world.

We’ll also have a minute’s applause ahead of kick-off to celebrate the ‘Legend’s Legend’.

0

TIGERS LOOK FOR THREE FROM THREE IN EUROPE

After victories over Pau and Cardiff Blues in Pool 5, a win this afternoon would make Tigers the first English team to win the opening three rounds of the Challenge Cup since Wasps in 2002.

The match represents a seventh meeting between Tigers and Calvisano, though it is the first since January 2005 – when Tigers won 62-10 at the Campo Comunale di Rovato, but then had to wait until midway through their flight home before confirming that results elsewhere had secured their qualification for the knockout stages of the Heineken Cup.

Read our full match preview here, or scroll down on this page.

0

WELCOME TO MATCHDAY LIVE!

We’re LIVE from Welford Road as Tigers defend their European record against Calvisano in Round 3 of the Challenge Cup, with kick-off to come at 3.00pm.

Follow all the action as it happens with our Matchday Live coverage, right here on the Tigers App and LeicesterTigers.com.


Opposition Lineup

Starting XV

15
Jacopo Trulla
14
Facundo Panceyra Garrido
13
Giacomo De Santis
12
Damiano Mazza
11
Marco Susio
10
Paolo Pescetto
9
Nicolo Casilio
1
Riccardo Brugnara
2
Matteo Luccardi
3
Lorenzo Cittadini
4
Andrea Zambonin
5
Davide Zanetti
6
Alessandro Izekor
7
Andrea Martani
8
Samuela Vunisa

Subs

16
Gabriele Morelli
17
Antonio Barducci
18
Piermaria Leso
19
Gabriele Venditti
20
Antoine Kouassi Koffi
21
Federico Consoli
22
Alberto Chiesa
23
Federico Mori

Match preview | Tigers in European Challenge Cup

Leicester Tigers face Italian opposition for the 25th time in the club’s history when they host Rugby Calvisano in the European Challenge Cup on Saturday (3.00pm).

After victories over Pau and Cardiff Blues in Pool 5, a win on Saturday would make Tigers the first English team to win the opening three rounds in the Challenge Cup since Wasps in 2002.

Four tries from Jonah Holmes and one from George Worth set Tigers on the way to a 41-20 bonus-point win over Pau in the opening round and they followed up with a gutsy win in Cardiff sealed with a last-minute penalty from Tom Hardwick to take top spot in the pool ahead of the back-to-back encounters with Calvisano.

The other two teams in the pool, Pau and Cardiff Blues, meet in the Welsh capital at 7.45pm on Saturday evening.

Saturday represents a seventh meeting between Tigers and Calvisano, though it is the first since January 2005 when Tigers won 62-10 away but then had to wait until midway through their flight home before confirming that results elsewhere had secured their qualification for the knockout stages of the Heineken Cup.

Milan, Amatori & Calvisano, Benetton Treviso, Viadana, Aironi and Calvisano have all lined up at Welford Road in the past couple of decades, with Tigers winning all 24 previous meetings with Italian clubs, including 22 games in the European Cup dating back to 1997.

Calvisano came through games against Tblisi and Italian teams Fiamme Oro and Rovigo in the Continental Shield to claim their place in this season’s Challenge Cup.

Referee on Saturday is Mr Craig Evans from Wales, making a first visit to Welford Road since an Anglo-Welsh Cup win over Gloucester a couple of seasons ago.

In team news announced ahead of the game, Tigers welcome Back Tommy Reffell and Telusa Veainu to the matchday squad and give a European debut to full-back Freddie Steward who celebrated his 19th birthday this week.

Geordan quotes: “We’ve had some tough conversations after the game at Northampton at last weekend and been critical of ourselves. We’re acutely aware that we weren’t good enough.

“But we’ve had two good results in this competition and we’ve had some big positives from those games. Calvisano will be very combative up front and very physical, but we want to focus on our own performance.

“We’ve made some changes and there’s an opportunity for guys to get more time in the shirt and experience playing in a European game at Welford Road.”

Tigers academy graduate Riccardo Brugnara returns to Welford Road in the Calvisano front row alongside Italy international Lorenzo Citadini.

For full information on the day at Welford Road, include plans to commemorate the achievements of Tigers legend David Matthews, click here for our Matchday guide.

Saturday’s game is not listed for live TV coverage, but if you are unable to attend the game you can follow all of the action with the club’s Matchday Live service on the Tigers app, or Tigers social media and website.

Match tickets are still available. Book any time up to kick-off in person at Welford Road, phone 0116 319 8888 (option 2) or online.

 

Team news | Leicester Tigers versus Calvisano

Telusa Veainu and Tommy Reffell return to the Leicester Tigers squad for Saturday’s Pool 5 fixture in the European Challenge Cup against Rugby Calvisano.

Tonga international full-back Veainu is in the squad for the first time since the Gallagher Premiership win over Gloucester last month as flanker Reffell returns after a six-week absence.

England’s World Cup players Manu Tuilagi, Jonny May, George Ford, Ben Youngs and Dan Cole are all in the starting line-up. Scrum-half Youngs will make his 70th appearance in European competition to move into second place on the club’s all-time list behind record-holder Geordan Murphy (74).

Tigers hand a European debut to full-back Freddie Steward who celebrates his 19th birthday today and there is a starting place for fellow academy graduate Sam Lewis in the second row.

Jordan Coghlan, the tryscorer in the Round 2 win over Cardiff Blues, starts alongside Reffell and Sione Kalamafoni in the back row.

Saturday is a David Matthews Celebration Day at Welford Road, honouring the club’s record appearance-holder and his contribution to the Tigers over more than 60 years. Among the tributes on the day is a minute’s applause in his honour ahead of kick-off.

Match tickets for Saturday are available now at the Tigers ticket office. Book in person at Welford Road, phone 0116 319 8888 (option 2) or book online.

The Tigers Ticket Office will be operating extended hours in the run-up to Christmas.

During the next fortnight, supporters will be able to speak with Ticket Staff in person at Welford Road and over the phone from 9.00am-8.00pm on weekdays and 9.00am-5.00pm on Saturdays.

Leicester Tigers (v Rugby Calvisano, Welford Road, Saturday 3.00pm)

15 Freddie Steward

14 Adam Thompstone

13 Manu Tuilagi         

12 Noel Reid  

11 Jonny May 

10 George Ford          

9 Ben Youngs

1 Facundo Gigena     

2 Tom Youngs (c)      

3 Dan Cole     

4 Sam Lewis

5 Calum Green

6 Jordan Coghlan

7 Tommy Reffell

8 Sione Kalamafoni    

Replacements

16 Jake Kerr   

17 Nephi Leatigaga    

18 Joe Heyes

19 Ifereimi Boladau

20 Guy Thompson

21 Sam Harrison

22 Tom Hardwick

23 Telusa Veainu

Rugby Calvisano: 15 Jacopo Trulla, 14 Facundo Panceyra-Garrido (c), 13 Giacomo De Santis, 12 Damiano Mazza, 11 Marco Susio, 10 Paolo Pescetto, 9 Nicolò Casilio; 1 Riccardo Brugnara, 2 Matteo Luccardi, 3 Lorenzo Cittadini, 4 Andrea Zambonin, 5 Davide Zanetti, 6 Alessandro Izekor, 7 Andrea Martani, 8 Samu Vunisa
Replacements: 16 Gabriele Morelli , 17 Antonio Barducci, 18 Piermaria Leso, 19 Gabriele Venditti, 20 Antoine Koffi, 21 Federico Consoli, 22 Alberto Chiesa, 23 Federico Mori

posteamteam namepldwdlfadifftftatblbpts
1
Leicester Tigers
Leicester TigersLEI6501181958623102123
4
Rugby Calvisano
Rugby CalvisanoCAL600668289-221743011
Form Guide
Form
LWDLL
Last Match
Lost to Bristol Bears 3-40
Past Meeting
Won 20-13
Form
Last Match
Past Meeting
Form
LLLLL
Last Match
Lost to Cardiff Blues 3-64
Past Meeting
Lost 13-20

Matchday Live

Leicester Tigers59
Leicester Tigers
Rugby Calvisano7
Rugby Calvisano
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