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Report | Bath edge out Tigers at The Rec

A Tom Homer try for Bath just 10 minutes from full-time denied Leicester Tigers victory at The Recreation Ground on Saturday in Round 9 of the Gallagher Premiership season.

Tigers fought their way into a 10-8 lead in the second half at The Rec before full-back Homer got his second try of the day and the home side held out for a 13-10 victory.

Making a second visit of the season to The Rec, Tigers were aiming to repeat their Cup win over old foes as the teams met for the 199th time in their collective history.

Homer's opening score gave Bath an early advantage and Tom Hardwick kicked the only other points of the first half as the break arrived with the hosts 5-3 in front after a scrappy arm-wrestle in which both sides defended forcefully but also struggled to create many decisive openings in attack.

The Tigers forwards got on top after the break, with a close-range try from scrum-half Ben White and conversion from Hardwick finally putting the visitors in front around the hour mark.

But Homer then dived in for the decisive score in the left-hand corner as they made five wins out of the last six Premiership meetings with Leicester.  

Bath made a late change when Ruaridh McConnochie withdrew during the warm-up, to be replaced on the wing by Aled Brew, and were led on to the pitch by Semesa Rokoduguni in his 150th appearance for the club.

It was skipper Rhys Priestland who took the kick-off on a misty, chilly day in the West Country and they got off to a flying start with a try on five minutes, with Homer free to dive in wide on the left after the initial attack had been halted just short of the line on the opposite side of the pitch.

Ben White used a quick throw on the right touchline to get Tigers forward. But his chip ahead bounced unkindly and Bath were able to reclaim and the scrum-half was then penalised for trying to delay their throw.

He looked to redeem himself, though, just minutes later with a dart from the base of ruck which caught the defenders cold before being tackled 10 metres from the line.

Tigers were gradually building momentum, keeping the ball tight as Dan Cole and Tomas Lavanini carried up to the tryline. With referee Wayne Barnes playing advantage, play was eventually stopped and Tom Hardwick – who had hooked an earlier penalty wide – knocked over the kick with 25 minutes gone.

Kyle Eastmond knocked-on at the restart but, with advantage over, then made a superb tackle to relieve the pressure.

It did not last long, though, as a penalty pushed Tigers back into defence and they made a series of strong tackles 20 metres out before Bath lost patience and tried a kick in behind which Hardwick fielded.

Priestland almost broke 30 metres out, but an ankle tap from Jordan Taufua put him off-balance and he spilled ball, allowing Jonah Holmes to clear.

The to-and-fro of midfield possession continued up to the break with the hosts 5-3 in front.

Bath had the first chance after the restart when Tigers were ruled offside in defence inside their own 22. Priestland’s kick made it 8-3 on 47 minutes.

A superb field of a high kick from Telusa Veainu set Tigers off on the counter-attack, forcing Bath to play into touch. The forwards then drove 15 metres up to the line. When the maul was brought down, flanker Josh Bayliss was yellow-carded and Tigers took play back into the left corner, only to be held up as bodies piled up on the line.

The Tigers forwards started to exert some control on proceedings with another set of phases almost within reach of the tryline. Harry Wells made the final push but was held up on the chalk and play restarted with an attacking scrum.

As Tom Youngs made way, Dan Cole took over captaincy duties and Bath were immediately whistled at the set-piece, with Tigers calling for a repeat. When ball stayed in the tight phases, scrum-half White made the decisive reach for the line to level the scores with his third try in three successive games.

Hardwick added the conversion as Tigers led for the first time, making it 8-10 on the hour.

A superb hit and rip from Cole in midfield won ball back and then Veainu’s clever kick ahead had Bath back on their heels, but they recovered to shut out any further progress.

Bath full-back Homer then claimed his second try of the afternoon with just 10 minutes remaining, finishing well in the left-hand corner to push his side in front at 13-10, though Priestland’s conversion came back off the post.

Tigers were then forced to keep ball in hand and play from deep as they chased another score, and almost wriggled free through Wells and Greg Bateman up to halfway. But Bath picked off the pass on the centre spot and Burns shifted play back into the corner to ensure play would be closed out in Tigers territory.

Match Details

HT ScoreHalf Time Score

BAT 5-3 LEI

FT ScoreFull Time Score

BAT 13-10 LEI

Attendance

14,029

Referee

Wayne Barnes

Match Stats

Bath Rugby
Leicester Tigers
Possession
48%
52%
Territory
48%
52%
Penalties Conceded
5
6
Yellow Cards
1
0
Red Cards
0
0
Tackles Won
197/217 91%
153/181 85%
Scrums Won
6/6 100%
3/3 100%
Lineouts Won
10/10 100%
13/19 68%

Player Stats

Bath Rugby
Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
TCDP
15Telusa Veainu
14Jonah Holmes
13Jaco Taute
12Kyle Eastmond
11Jordan Olowofela
10Tom Hardwick1C1P
9Ben White1T
1Facundo Gigena
2Tom Youngs
3Dan Cole
4Tomas Lavanini
5Will Spencer
6Harry Wells
7Jordan Taufua
8Sione Kalamafoni
16Tatafu Polota-Nau
17Greg Bateman
18Joe Heyes
19Ifereimi Boladau
20Tommy Reffell
21Harry Simmons
22Noel Reid
23George Worth
Bath Rugby
Bath Rugby
13

Full Time

Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
10
Bath Rugby
T
P
T
KOHTFT
Leicester Tigers
P
T
C

Commentary

80

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT

Big thank you to all of those following along on Matchday Live this afternoon; your support is invaluable.

There's a short break in the fixture list now, with Tigers next in action against Wasps at Welford Road on Saturday, February 15 (3.00pm).

Until then goodbye.

FULL TIME | 13-10

Priestland puts the ball over the stand for full time, and Tigers come away with just a consolation point from their arm wrestle at The Rec.

80

BATH KEEP THE BALL

Chudley steers his forwards through the motions as the home side control the ball in the closing moments.

78

CLEAR THE LINES

Another good contest at scrum-time on the Tigers line, but White boots clear with about two minutes of this game remaining.

BATH CHANGE

Taulupe Faletau leaves the field, replaced by Matt Garvey.

HEYES ON

Dan Cole is replaced by Joe Heyes at tighthead. Wells is now Tigers captain.

77

BATH TURN IT OVER

Tigers look to break out with the ball in hand as Wells runs a lovely line on the fringes, but Chudley snaffles possession as it comes back to the middle of the pitch, and White just about manages to haul down his man.

76

POP PASS

Chudley puts up a short ball for Matavesi to run on to, and he attempts to break the Leicester line.

74

FREE KICK TO LEICESTER

The Tigers scrum holds strong and gives Hardwick a chance to kick into the Bath half, but Burns returns it and the Tigers fly-half makes a bit of a meal of the take, just eluding touch and just about surviving long enough for the support.

WORTH FOR TAUTE

Jaco Taute takes his place in the dugout, with George Worth now on the field.

73

KNOCK ON

The Australia international can't find his man at the lineout, but there's a get-out-of-jail-free card in the form of a Bath knock on.

72

CROWD FIND THEIR VOICE

The home crowd find their voice for the first time in this match as their men break forward via a Freddie Burns-hack through.

The ball is into touch, though, so Polota-Nau will have a throw in.

BACK ROW CHANGE

Tommy Reffell is on in place of Jordan Taufua in the Tigers back row.

70

OFF THE POST!

Priestland's conversion attempt bounces off the post.

HOMER GETS IT DOWN

Bath full-back Tom Homer gets on the end of a sweeping move in Tigers' half, and he touches down in the corner under pressure from Veainu.

OBANO OFF

Beno Obano is replaced by Lewis Boyce in the Bath front row.

REID FOR EASTMOND

Noel Reid is onto the pitch in place of inside centre Kyle Eastmond.

68

TIGERS BOOT CLEAR

A nervous moment as Bath hack through on the right, but Tigers boot clear.

SPENCER REPLACED

Spencer jogs off the field under his own steam as he is replaced by Ifereimi Boladau.

66

TAUFUA BREAKS OUT

Another big shove at the lineout sets up a maul towards halfway, and Taufua breaks off the side with the ball to make another couple of metres.

The ball comes back Leicester's way ... and it's the New Zealand back row who attempts the Harlem Globetrotter-style pass out the back, which goes into touch.

66

SPENCER BACK IN THE FRAY

Will Spencer takes some treatment and his team-mates have a breather, but he's back in the Leicester line for now.

18 AND 20

Sam Nixon takes the place of Christian Judge at tighthead for Bath, while Tom Ellis joins the action and brings Bath back up to 15 men following Bayliss' yellow card.

64

FOOTBALL SKILLS

Bateman breaks through ... but he's brought back for a Bath advantage, so the ball is pumped downfield to Veainu, who blocks it with a shin and gathers to return with a huge nudge back towards the boxes here at The Rec.

62

RIPPED BY COLE

Tigers win back possession with a brilliant rip from new captain Cole.

TIGERS TAKE THE LEAD

Hardwick makes no mistake with the conversion, and Tigers get their noses in front by 10 points to 8, on the hour mark.

RESPONSE FROM TIGERS

Quick-thinking from White at the breakdown gets his second score in as many visits to The Rec this season, and it levels the scores here.

59

SCRUM PENALTY

Barnes raises an arm on the Leicester side at the scrum, and Cole opts for another bite of the cherry. They pack down...

MATAVESI MAKES BATH DEBUT

Josh Matavesi replaces Jackson Willison on the home side.

CHANGE AT HOOKER

Tatafu Polota-Nau is on for Tom Youngs, and tighthead Cole is now Tiegers captain.

58

HELD UP!

Tigers get in behind the Bath line, and attempt to smash it over for their first score of the afternoon ... but it's held up!

Frustration for the Tigers packs after some great work, but they'll have a scrum on the five-metre line.

56

OFFLOAD SKILL

Tigers rumble through the heavy phases once more, as they work themselves into the Bath 22, metre by metre.

Youngs meets Obano in a big way, before Taufua is wrapped up in the tackle and somehow gets the ball out to Kalamafoni.

55

BATH KICK CLEAR

The home side snaffle the ball at the set piece and kick clear for a lineout on the 22.

53

NOT QUITE THIS TIME...

Tigers go to the rolling maul once more, with the advantage of an extra man, but Barnes calls it short. Bath somehow have a penalty - we're quite sure what for, from up here - and so they'll have the feed into a scrum on their five-metre line.

CHANGE AT SCRUM-HALF

Chris Cook's place at Bath pivot is taken by Will Chudley.

PROP SWAP

Greg Bateman replaces Facundo Gigena in the Tigers front row.

YELLOW CARD | JOSH BAYLISS

Bath back-rower Bayliss is judged to have pulled that maul down illegally, and he receives a yellow card.

51

TO THE DANGER MEN

A huuuge Tigers maul rumbles all the way up to the line, where Barnes calls advantage to the away side.

White feeds out to Veainu and Holmes, who's just pushed into touch in the right-hand corner, but we'll come back for the original offence.

50

CHIP-AND-CHASE

Veainu is back in action, too, as he chips down the left and almost gathers his kick to run in and score ... but a Bath hand gets to the ball first and it's nudged into touch.

Tigers will have a lineout in a dangerous position, though.

48

TELUSA PUSHES ON

Telusa Veainu grabs the game by the scruff of the neck as he powers through the Bath line, and it takes three men in blue, black and white to take him down.

HOME PENALTY

...and it's through. Priestland's successful kick stretches the Btah lead to five points.

46

SHOT AT GOAL

Taufua and then Cole get over the ball at two consecutive rucks, but Bath somehow come away with it ... and win a shot at goal for a misdemeanor on the floor. Priestland points to the posts...

44

LINEOUT DISCOMFORT

Tigers have a throw on the edge of their 22, but it's batted straight back into touch so Youngs goes for a long one to Taufua ... but it's not straight, according to Barnes. Scrum down.

43

CATERPILLAR RUCK

Wayne Barnes sees nothing wrong with Hardwick's take in the backfield - although the partisan crowd do - and White slows things down by setting a caterpillar ruck before he kicks downfield.

41

KALAMAFONI CLIMBS HIGHEST

The Tigers No8 gets under a high ball as his side start at a decent tack in this second period.

BACK IN ACTION

Tom Hardwick puts boot to ball and gets the second half started in Bath.

HALF TIME | 5-3

One for the purists at the Recreation Ground, where Tigers trail by just two points at the break.

40

KNOCK ON

And that probably sums up the half; a knock on prompts Waynes Barnes to blow his whistle and signal for the sheds.

39

MAN MISSED

We'll have another scrum in the closing seconds of this first half, after the Tigers lineout creaks once more. The throw looked good ... but neither jumer could quite get a hand to it.

38

DOUBLE DOWN

Tigers are pinged for crossing after multiple phases in the Bath half, and they double down on the error as they get marched back another 10 metres for back-chat with the referee.

38

TIGERS NUDGE FORWARDS

Tigers look to make immediate amends with some more positive carries through the guts of the Bath defence, with Olowofela leading the way on this near side before Kalamafoni has a go down the middle.

36

LINEOUT GOES AWRY

The second throw doesn't go quite as well, though, and Bath scrum-half Chris Cook has time to set his blockers before kicking clear.

36

THROW ON HALFWAY

Harry Wells climbs highest at the lineout and bats the ball back for his support, and White's box-kick finds good ground on the right-hand touchline. We'll have another throw.

34

THIRD TIME LUCKY?

Bath get the ball down the tunnel at the third time of asking, and Priestland breaks down the middle of the pitch off the back of the forwards' shove ... but Tigers kick clear and Jonah Holmes chases well to deny the quick throw.

33

SCRUM DOWN

There's a warning for the Bath front row as the scrum has to be reset, and the two packs search for an even footing on this old-school pitch.

32

EASTMOND TAKES HIS MAN

Bath are back on halfway after a bullocking tackle from Kyle Eastmond wins the ball back, and Hardwick kicks clear.

The returned kick hangs in the air long enough for Burns to go for it ... but he knocks on, and we'll restart with a scrum.

30

HARDWICK COLLECTS

Tigers have tested Bath's patience with a stern defence ... and it seems to have worked in this phase. One of the backs stabs the ball through the line in frustration, but Hardwick collects and White kicks clear.

28

DEFENSIVE MODE

Tigers are back in their own quarter of the field now, and into defensive mode once more.

Facundo Gigena and Taufua lead the way with some big hits in defence, and Bath look to be all out of answers via route one.

27

TEAMS CALLED BACK

Olowofela thought he was through, there ... but there's a peep on Barnes' whistle as the two teams are brought back for a misdemeanour at the last lineout.

Lavanini receives some treatment on the floor before he rejoins his team-mates.

SHOT AT GOAL

Hardwick drills the ball between the uprights and gets Tigers on to the score board at The Rec.

24

OVER THE LINE

Tigers work the ball up to the line and work through the heavy phases, first Lavanini, then Will Spencer, then Kalamafoni ... all the big men have a go at trying to get the ball down, but once they eventually break through referee Waynes Barnes calls the ball held up.

We'll come back for a Tigers penalty attempt instead.

21

INTO THE RED ZONE

White darts through the defensive line and is brought down within metres from the dead-ball area. That's been Tigers' closest chance of this half, so far.

20

TAUFUA PUMPS THE LEGS

Bath cough up the ball into Tigers hands again, and you don't need to invite Jordan Taufua into a heavy carry more than once.

He engages the leg drive and powers through three defenders to make some metres for the men in fluoro-red.

18

HIGH KICK FROM HARDWICK

The match restarts with a Leicester throw, and Tigers look to the air again. Hardwick's kick is high and it's gathered by a Bath hand, before they run it into touch.

Ben White is the recipient of a quick restart throw, and he breaks from 22 down to 22, but Bath win a penalty and the ball is theirs once more.

HEAD INJURY ASSESSMENT

Aled Brew is replaced by No22 Freddie Burns.

17

BATH FIRE THEIR SHOTS

The men in blue, black and white win the ball back for their first real possession in a little while, and fire a shot down the left - making a half break - but Tigers hold strong.

15

OLOWOFELA CLOSES THE DOOR

Tigers put the ball through hands as they make the most of their possession, before Hardwick threads another dink through the line.

Priestland goes for the clearance kick, but Olowofela is there and it bounces off the wing into touch.

14

MISSED KICK

Hardwick won't be happy with that one ... the attempt is one of those kicks that doesn't look right from the moment it leaves the tee.

13

LEICESTER THROW

Tigers set up a powerful driving maul from their throw, before Dan Cole breaks out with the ball after it's intentionally brought down by the home pack.

He's tackled to the ground, so we'll come back for the penalty ... and Hardwick points to the posts.

12

TERRITORY REVERSED

The game swings again as Tigers win the ball, and Ben White pokes it through for Tigers throw in the home 22.

Stuart Hooper's men win possession back, but the attention of Harry Wells and Lavanini - and almost a charge down from scrum-half White - mean the touchfinder from Priestland is poor.

10

PENALTY ON THE FLOOR

...but all that nice work is undone moments later as Tigers give away a penalty at the next breakdown, and Priestland pins the ball into touch.

Bath have a lineout just beyond Leicester's 10-metre line.

10

NEAT INTER-PLAY

Hardwick does well to pounce on a loosely bouncing ball on what looks like a difficult surface, and passes out to Kyle Eastmond and Jaco Taute, with the South African centre finding Jordan Olowofela with a nice pass back inside.

8

HEAVY CARRIES

The Tigers pack look to wrestle back the momentum in this game, and Will Spencer makes a half-break against his former club to put Leicester on the front foot.

7

THREAD THE NEEDLE

Tomás Lavanini hands off a Bath forward, before he's crunched by Beno Obano. Tom Hardwick takes the territory by threading through a neat kick into touch, just inside the home 22.

6

JUST THE FIVE

Priestland's touchline conversion attempt is to the left, so Bath's lead is five points.

SCORE IN THE CORNER

The Bath forwards batter down the Leicester door, work the overlap, and put Tom Homer over on the left-hand side.

2

TIGERS THROW

Both teams look for territory in the early salvos, with Bath drawing a lineout on the edge of the Tigers 22, but the throw squeaks to the right - and into the arms of a grateful Dan Cole - but we'll restart with a home scrum.

0

LATE CHANGE

There's a (very) late change for the home side, as No11 Ruaridh McConnochie pulls up in the warm-up. He's replaced by Aled Brew on the left wing.

KICK-OFF FROM THE REC

Rhys Priestland gets the game underway in Round 9 of the Gallagher Premiership.

0

ON TO THE FIELD

Tigers take to the field, led out by club captain Tom Youngs.

0

FIVE MINUTES TO GO

Boris takes one of his props, Joe Heyes, out for a walk as Tigers run through their final warm-ups. Both teams head up the tunnel with five minutes to go until kick-off.

0

CONFIRMED TEAM NEWS

Internationals Tomás Lavanini, Telusa Veainu and Jonah Holmes return to the starting line-up for this afternoon’s fixture.

After securing a place in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals since the last league game, Tigers call on Lavanini at lock in a pack which also includes Dan Cole and Jordan Taufua, who started among the replacements in Pau last weekend.

Harry Wells makes a 50th Premiership appearance as he joins Taufua and Sione Kalamafoni in the back row.

Veainu and Holmes are joined by Jordan Olowofela in the back three, with Jaco Taute and Kyle Eastmond reunited at centre after sitting out last weekend.

Mike Williams, who moved from Welford Road to Bath last summer, starts at flanker in blue, black and white, while former Tigers fly-half Freddie Burns takes a place among the replacements.

England international wing Semesa Rokoduguni makes his 150th club appearance in a side captained by Rhys Priestland.

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

0

BATEMAN TALKS UP SQUAD COMPETITION

Tigers front-rower Greg Bateman says competition for places in the wider Leicester squad can only help improve the depth of the side.

“I think that’s the only way that you can keep a good performance environment – if you’ve got lads chomping at the bit for your space and you’re chomping at the bit for somebody else’s,” he said.

“True competition is what breeds that performance environment and the quality of the squad we’ve got has got better over the last couple of years so I think we’re in a pretty good spot.”

Coming up against a physical Bath pack this afternoon will be a big test of that depth – particularly among the forwards, according to Bateman.

He added: “It’s going to be a big job for the pack as they pride themselves on their ability in the scrum and the driving maul, but so do we.”

You can see more of Bateman’s chat with LeicesterTigers.com here.

0

REID PREDICTS ‘TOUGH CHALLENGE’ AT THE REC

While Tigers will be shorn of a handful of their international stars for this league clash, Noel Reid has insisted that the remaining experience in the camp, plus the young players blooded in European competition, will stand the club in good stead this afternoon.

“We’re missing a few internationals, but the bulk of the squad that has played in the majority of the games so far this season is still here,” he explained mid-week.

“As a group, we’ve had a good start to the training week, and we want to continue that into the weekend.

“Bath will serve a tough challenge, but a win would really set us up nicely for the next block of games and would give us even more confidence and momentum, and put us in an even better place.”

Read the inside back’s full preview of this Round 9 match, right here.

0

MATCH PREVIEW | TIGERS RETURN TO THE REC

Leicester Tigers make a second visit of the season to Bath’s Recreation Ground this afternoon in Round 9 of the Gallagher Premiership.

Back in October, Tigers won a Premiership Rugby Cup fixture on their rivals’ home patch in the 198th meeting of the clubs.

On that occasion, academy graduates Tommy Reffell and Ben White scored the tries in an 18-7 victory over the men in blue, black and white.

Bath, though, have lost just one of the last five Premiership meetings with their old rivals – with the Leicester win coming at Twickenham in April 2018.

See all the important facts and stats in our full match preview here, or scroll down on this page.

WELCOME TO MATCHDAY LIVE!

We’re LIVE from the Recreation Ground for Leicester Tigers’ Gallagher Premiership fixture with Bath Rugby, 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
Tom Homer
14
Semesa Rokoduguni
13
Max Wright
12
Jackson Willison
11
Aled Brew
10
Rhys Priestland
9
Chris Cook
1
Beno Obano
2
Jack Walker
3
Christian Judge
4
Josh McNally
5
Elliott Stooke
6
Mike Williams
7
Josh Bayliss
8
Taulupe Faletau

Subs

16
Tom Doughty
17
Lewis Boyce
18
Sam Nixon
19
Matt Garvey
20
Tom Ellis
21
Will Chudley
22
Freddie Burns
23
Josh Matavesi

Preview | Tigers return to The Rec

Leicester Tigers make a second visit of the season to Bath’s Recreation Ground today in the ninth round of the Gallagher Premiership campaign.

Back in October, Tigers won a Premiership Rugby Cup fixture on their rivals’ home patch in the 198th meeting of the clubs.

On that occasion, academy graduates Tommy Reffell and Ben White scored the tries in an 18-7 victory over the men in blue, black and white.

In those 198 previous encounters, Tigers lead the win count 115-70. The Rec has hosted 101 of those meetings, with Tigers winning 39 times there.

Bath, though, have lost just one of the last five Premiership meetings with their old rivals – with the Leicester win coming at Twickenham in April 2018.

For Saturday’s 199th meeting, Tigers recall international trio Tomás Lavanini, Telusa Veainu and Jonah Holmes to the starting line-up, with Harry Wells in line for his 50th Premiership appearance.

Previewing Saturday’s action, head coach Geordan Murphy said: “Bath is always a difficult place to go, they are a quality side and they played very well against Ulster in Europe. They have a very strong pack and a good style of rugby with Rhys Priestland and Freddie Burns as international fly-halves.”

Priestland is the Premiership’s top points scorer so far this season and captains Bath on Saturday as wing Semesa Rokoduguni makes a 150th appearance for the club.

Bath director of rugby Stuart Hooper makes 11 changes to the side that faced Ulster in Belfast last week, with six players on England duty. Tom Homer, Beno Obano and Jack Walker are the three starting in consecutive matches.

Former Tigers forward Mike Williams starts in the back row, with Freddie Burns among the replacements.

Tigers will be in the club’s alternate fluoro red kit on Saturday.

Match referee is Wayne Barnes, Premiership Rugby’s most experienced official.

Kick-off is at 3.00pm. This game is not scheduled for live coverage. If you are unable to attend the game, you can keep up to date with the action on the Matchday Live service on the Tigers website and app or social media channels.

If you still want to follow live rugby on Saturday and cannot make the trip, the Tigers Academy host Worcester Warriors in the Under-18 League at Welford Road at noon. Admission is free. Click here for the match preview.

Team news | Tigers away to Bath

Internationals Tomás Lavanini, Telusa Veainu and Jonah Holmes return to the Leicester Tigers starting line-up for Saturday’s Gallagher Premiership Round 9 fixture away to Bath Rugby (3.00pm).

After securing a place in the European Challenge Cup quarter-finals since the last league game, against Bristol at the start of January, Tigers travel to The Recreation Ground with Lavanini resuming at lock in a pack which also includes Dan Cole and Jordan Taufua, who started among the replacements in Pau last weekend.

Harry Wells makes a 50th Premiership appearance as he joins Taufua and Sione Kalamafoni in the back row.

Veainu and Holmes are joined by Jordan Olowofela in the back three, with Jaco Taute and Kyle Eastmond reunited at centre after sitting out last weekend.

Head coach Geordan Murphy said: “It’s an interesting fixture at this time of the year with both teams having a few players away, but it is a massive game for us and we look forward to going there.”

Calum Green has had an operation on a fractured cheekbone and joins fellow forwards Hanro Liebenberg and Guy Thompson on the injury list. Tigers are also without five players – Ellis Genge, George Ford, Jonny May, Manu Tuilagi and Ben Youngs – who are with the England squad preparing for the start of the Six Nations.

Leicester Tigers (v Bath Rugby, The Recreation Ground, Saturday 3.00pm)

15 Telusa Veainu

14 Jonah Holmes

13 Jaco Taute

12 Kyle Eastmond

11 Jordan Olowofela

10 Tom Hardwick

9 Ben White

1 Facundo Gigena

2 Tom Youngs (c)

3 Dan Cole

4 Tomás Lavanini

5 Will Spencer

6 Harry Wells

7 Jordan Taufua

8 Sione Kalamafoni

Replacements

16 Tatafu Polota-Nau

17 Greg Bateman

18 Joe Heyes

19 Ifereimi Boladau

20 Tommy Reffell

21 Harry Simmons

22 Noel Reid

23 George Worth

Bath Rugby: 15 Tom Homer, 14 Semesa Rokoduguni, 13 Max Wright, 12 Jackson Willison, 11 Ruaridh McConnochie, 10 Rhys Priestland (c), 9 Chris Cook; 1 Beno Obano, 2 Jack Walker, 3 Christian Judge, 4 Josh McNally, 5 Elliott Stooke, 6 Mike Williams, 7 Josh Bayliss, 8 Taulupe Faletau.

Replacements: 16 Tom Doughty, 17 Lewis Boyce, 18 Sam Nixon, 19 Matt Garvey, 20 Tom Ellis, 21 Will Chudley, 22 Freddie Burns, 23 Josh Matavesi.

posteamteam namepldwdlfadifftftatblbpts
5
Bath Rugby
Bath RugbyBAT11704208217-920261029
11
Leicester Tigers
Leicester TigersLEI11317180270-9018321116
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Last Match
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Past Meeting
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Past Meeting
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Matchday Live

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Leicester Tigers10
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