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Match report: Cup campaign ends in defeat

Leicester Tigers ended their defence of the Anglo-Welsh Cup with a 50-28 defeat away to Wasps in Round 4 on Sunday.

Needing a big bonus-point win to overhaul Newcastle Falcons in Pool 4, a Luke Hamilton try after nine minutes gave Tigers an early lead. But two scores in four minutes in reply put Wasps ahead and they added two more before the half-hour to stretch the lead to 26-7.

Two tries in three minutes from Harry Simmons in the lead-up to half-time got Tigers right back in the game as they trailed by just five points at the break.

But the next score was always going to prove vital and it was Wasps who made the second-half breakthrough, adding two tries before Jonah Holmes claimed a bonus-point score for Tigers. There was still time for a seventh and eighth try from the home side as they reached the half-century mark.

In team news announced on Friday, Tigers handed a debut to academy lock forward Cameron Jordan in a team led by Matt Smith. Luke Hamilton, Tom Brady, Jonah Holmes and Michele Rizzo supplied the experience in a team which also included loan signings Declan Cusack and Adam Batt from Doncaster and Jimmy Stevens from Nottingham.

Wasps, meanwhile, included former Tigers academy players in fly-half Jacob Umaga and flanker Will Owen, while senior players Tommy Taylor and Josh Barrett returned to action after injury.

In a positive start from the visitors, Tigers enjoyed a dozen phases of play in the opening few minutes and thought they’d made the breakthrough from a tap penalty, only to see Simmons denied by a combination of tackler Will Owen, referee Ben Breakspear and the TMO.

After flanker Adam Batt had carried twice out wide in those opening phases, back-row partners Fred Tuilagi and Hamilton were just as prominent after the game restarted with an attacking scrum before Simmons was stopped on the tryline by the defence before the referee came back for another penalty.

Then, after Charlie Thacker and Smith had threatened the line, Hamilton had the final touch for the opening score of the afternoon. George Worth added the kick for a seven-point lead.

Wasps, though, provided an immediate response when they gained front-foot ball on the Tigers 22 and, after the forwards had carried up to the line, Marcus Watson finished on the left. Umaga was off target with the kick as Tigers led 7-5 with 13 minutes gone.

A penalty on the left gave Tigers another attacking perform, but Wasps won turnover ball and threatened a breakaway score until the defence caught up with Watson 30 metres out.

But the pressure was not alleviated totally as Wasps had a penalty and kept ball on the left. Then, with the defence stretched, a flick pass from Owen allowed Rob Miller to score and Umaga’s conversion made it 12-7.

Tigers enjoyed a good spell of possession in the Wasps half without making significant inroads and paid the price when Miller grabbed his second try moments later, finding a gap in the defence and stepping past the cover to sore under the posts. Umaga added the extras as the lead reached 19-7 on 25 minutes.

The hosts only had to wait just two more minutes for a fourth try, Taylor making the initial break and second-rower Marcus Garratt finishing from close range. Umaga made it three from four with the kick from the right of the posts.

It was third-time lucky for Simmons just after the half-hour when, after Tuilagi had carried three times in a period of Tigers pressure, the scrum-half sniped around the breakdown to score.

After Worth had added the kick, the hosts ended the half down to 14 men after Garratt was sin-binned following a tackle on Smith which the referee and TMO considered dangerous and Tigers made the most of it as Simmons darted through a gap to dive in for his second score.

Worth, after a delay for the TMO to check for a possible knock-on, made the kick and Tigers had cut the deficit to 26-21 just 90 seconds before the half-time whistle.

Smith made way for teenager Sam Wager at half-timer, with Hamilton taking over as captain and the period was just two minutes old when Jimmy Stevens took over from Jake Kerr in the front row.

There was an escape for Tigers when Wasps thought they’d scored on the right, only to be brought back for a knock-on from Miller before Owain James ran in on the right.

But respite lasted only a couple of minutes before Miller opened up the Tigers defence and released scrum-half Craig Hampson to score with the visitors outnumbered on the Wasps right. Umaga added the conversion to push the lead to 33-21.

Back-rower Jack Willis, prominent in all of Wasps’ best work, opened up the field with a big carry on halfway, but when Hampson kicked upfield, Tigers were able to shepherd the ball out.

With scrum-half Will Yarnell on for Simmons and Henri Lavin on for his debut in the back row, Tigers had two 17-year-olds on the field for the final half-hour.

Miller’s cheeky little kick into the corner had the Tigers defence in retreat but the ball just evaded the grasp of Jones. Tigers, though, were whistled for not straight at the lineout and the hosts had the platform of an attacking scrum as they looked for a sixth score.

The defence got through its work in front of the posts, but when play finally opened up Umaga showed good footwork to get through to the line against his former club. The fly-half also added the kick to make it 40-21 with 14 minutes remaining.

Tigers instantly replied, making most of a penalty on the left to set up possession at a lineout and, with the referee playing advantage, Yarnell showed good skill with a precise chip-kick  which Holmes caught to dot down behind the posts for his sixth of the season and the bonus point.

Wasps were not done, though, and they ran in another try from Bassett in the left-hand corner after stretching the Tigers defence. Umaga couldn’t add the extras from near the touchline as the clock ticked into the final eight minutes.

Holmes gathered the restart to give Tigers some forward momentum and Worth pushed play into the left-hand corner when Wasps were whistled offside. Maksymiw’s lineout catch set up a strong drive which was ended only when Wasps were penalised again.

The drive looked destined for the line again, with Stevens in possession, before flanker James Seabrook was yellow-carded. From the next lineout Holmes almost made it to the line but then was called upon to chase down Bassett aftrer the Wasps wing intercepted and ran free.

Although Holmes chased down Bassett and tackled Miller in midfield, Wasps kept the ball alive. Yarnell was yellow-carded on his own line and as Wasps tapped the penalty, Bassett was able to force his way over for the hosts’ eighth of the afternoon.

Miller was off target with the conversion attempt but there was barely time for Tigers to restart before the final whistle was blown on their cup campaign.

Match Details

HT ScoreHalf Time Score

WAS 26-21 LEI

FT ScoreFull Time Score

WAS 50-28 LEI

Attendance

9,409

Referee

Ben Breakspear

Match Stats

Wasps
Leicester Tigers
Possession
50%
50%
Territory
48%
52%
Penalties Conceded
11
6
Yellow Cards
2
1
Red Cards
0
0
Tackles Won
151/165 92%
158/193 82%
Scrums Won
5/5 100%
9/9 100%
Lineouts Won
6/8 75%
12/14 86%

Player Stats

Wasps
Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
TCDP
15Declan Cusack
14
13Matt Smith
12Charlie Thacker
11Jonah Holmes1T
10George Worth4C
9Harry Simmons2T
1Michele Rizzo
2Jake Kerr
3Chris Baumann
4Cameron Jordan
5Joe Maksymiw
6Luke Hamilton1T
7Adam Batt
8Fred Tuilagi
16Jimmy Stevens
17Facundo Gigena
18Ben Betts
19
20Henri Lavin
21Will Yarnell
22Sam Wager
23Mathew Tait
Wasps
Wasps
50

Full Time

Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
28
Wasps
T
T
C
T
C
T
C
T
C
T
C
T
T
KOHTFT
Leicester Tigers
T
C
T
C
T
C
T
C

Commentary

WASPS WIN IT IN COVENTRY

That is the end of the road in this season's Anglo-Welsh Cup for Leicester Tigers, going down fighting to Wasps by 22-points in an entertaining affair this Sunday afternoon. 

80

CLOCK TICKING DOWN

Time is all but over as Wasps attack inside their own half, following the Tigers re-start, and now find touch as the whistle is blown to end the match. 

TRY - WASPS

The home side take the penalty chance quickly, 5m out, and force their way over down the right-hand side through Josh Bassett. 

YELLOW CARD - WILL YARNELL

The Tigers replacement scrum-half is sent to the bin following the scramble at the back on our own line. 

78

INTERCEPT FROM WASPS

The home side intercept a looping Tigers pass in attack and fullback Jacob Miller is away now, but chased down by Jonah Holmes. 

They move it to the right in the first phase, again though don't find the line despite numbers as Tigers bravely scramble to hold the home side out. 

77

TIGERS 5M LINE-OUT

Another chance for Tigers close to the line. 

YELLOW CARD - JAMES SEABROOK

Wasps back-rower James Seabrook is sent to the sin bin, and for an early shower, after Wasps were warned. 

75

MAUL BROUGHT DOWN

The driving maul is on for Tigers and brought down by Wasps - no advantage, penalty is blown for Tigers 5m out. 

74

OPPORTUNITY FOR TIGERS

Leicester with a chance now, after Worth finds touch on the back off a midfield penalty, 5m out from the Wasps line. 

72

CONVERSION UNSUCCESSFUL

Umaga can't convert the try and the gap remains 17 with eight minutes remaining. 

TRY - WASPS

The ball is moved wide to the left quickly from the 5m line-out and Wasps cross in the corner through Josh Bassett. 

70

CLOCK TICKS OVER IN TO FINAL TEN MINUTES

We enter the final ten minutes here in Coventry. 

68

CLEARANCE KICK DOESN'T FIND LINE

Tigers fullback Declan Cusack doesn't find touch with the clearing kick, handing Wasps an attacking chance inside the Leicester half. 

CONVERSION - TIGERS

Worth converts the try and closes the gap to 12 points. 

TRY - TIGERS

On the first phase from the line-out 5m out, Will Yarnell chips the ball over the Wasps line quick up in defence for Jonah Holmes to race through and score! 

65

PENALTY ENDS WASPS ATTACK

Deep inside their own half, Wasps are penalised in attack at the ruck. 

CONVERSION - TIGERS

Umaga converts his own try and stretches the Wasps lead to 19 points. 

TRY - WASPS

Despite a brave effort in defence from Tigers for two minutes off the back of a Wasps scrum 5m out, the home side find a way through as a dancing Jacob Umaga steps his way around Leicester's big men and dives over to score. 

60

NOT STRAIGHT FROM TIGERS

5m out from their own line, Tigers throw is ruled not to be straight and Wasps will feed a scrum with another attacking chance. 

59

WASPS WITH A HALF CHANCE

The home side come to the right quickly and drop the ball on the toe for a grubber through the Tigers defensive line, only for it to dribble out over the touch-line. 

58

END-TO-END STUFF

The pitch continuing to get a good work out today, as the ball moves up and down the field through hand and boot. 

54

CHANGE GOES BEGGING

After spreading the Wasps defence, Tigers knock-on in the switch back to right hand side of the field and give up the opportunity inside the Wasps attacking zone. 

53

TIGERS SCRUM 30 OUT

Leicester feed the scrum 30m out from the Wasps line and come away immediately off the back of the set-piece, spreading it wide. 

51

TIGERS FIND TOUCH THIS TIME

George Worth finds touch this time and Tigers go on the march inside the Wasps 22m line. 

A strip from Wasps fly-half Umaga sees the ball turned over a few phases following the set piece but, a brilliant cover tackle from replacement hooker Jimmy Stevens sees the home side knock-on. 

50

YARNELL ... YAH SIR!

The youngster, just minutes after entering the action, makes a crucial turnover and forces the penalty to end the Wasps attack. Great start from the Cub! 

49

MISSED OPPORTUNITY FOR TIGERS

A penalty inside the visitors own half is wasted as the kick for touch doesn't find the line and hands Wasps a start to their attack on their own 22. 

DOUBLE CHANGE UP FRONT FOR TIGERS

Geordan Murphy makes a double substitution, in the front-row, as Facundo Gigena and Ben Betts come on to the pitch. 

They replace international front-row duo Michele Rizzo and Chris Baumann. 

CONVERSION - WASPS

The home side extend their lead to 12 points with Jacob Umaga adding the extra two on the back of the try, successfully kicking from the tee. 

TRY - WASPS

The home side cross for the first try of the second half, through captain Craig Hampson, after the scrum-half is gifted a ball in space down the right flank after Wasps found themselves with the overlap on the end of a mid-field break. 

45

SIN BIN COMES TO AN END

Wasps lock Marcus Garratt returns to the field after completing his sin bin from the first half. 

THIRD CHANGE FOR TIGERS

Harry Simmons comes from the field, replaced at scrum-half by Will Yarnell. 

44

NO TRY THE RULING

Are observation was correct, no try is the ruling. Scrum to Tigers 5 out from their link. 

43

POTENTIAL TRY FOR WASPS

The home side bring it to the right quickly and cross out wide, however, it appears Jonah Holmes may have forced a knock-on from Wasps. 

TIGERS MAKE SECOND CHANGE

Jake Kerr comes from the field and is replaced by Jimmy Stevens, on loan from Nottingham. 

40

SECOND HALF ACTION UNDERWAY

Wasps get us underway for the second half. 

MURPHY MAKES A CHANGE

Coach Geordan Murphy has made one change at the break, with Sam Wager replacing Matt Smith in the midfield. 

Luke Hamilton is now captaining the side. 

TIGERS TRAIL AT THE BREAK

A back and forth from both teams on the scoreboard in the opening half sees the gap at just five points as they head in to the changing rooms for the break, with Tigers scrum-half Harry Simmons scoring a double. 

CONVERSION - TIGERS

Worth adds the extra two points and closes the gap to just five points now. 

TRY - TIGERS

Harry Simmons scoots from the base of the ruck, ducks and weaves his way through Wasps defenders and dives over under the posts for his second ... despite a disagreement between officials. 

YELLOW CARD - MARCUS GARRATT

The Wasps lock is sent to the sin-bin as replays show a clear intent and action of foul play. 

37

TIME OFF FOR A T.M.O CHAT

A break in play just a couple of phases following the re-start as Marcus Garratt appears to lift Matt Smith above the horizontal and on to his neck at the ruck. 

CONVERSION - TIGERS

George Worth adds the conversion and closes the gap to 12 points here in Coventry with five minutes remaining in the first half. 

TRY - TIGERS

Tigers strike back with their second of the afternoon through scrum-half Harry Simmons, on the back of a patient build up of phase-play following the line-out 5m out. 

33

TIGERS OPPORTUNITY

Leicester with a chance now as they receive a penalty 10m out and kick for the corner to feed a 5m line-out. 

30

TIGERS DOUBLE CHANCE

A forward pass from Wasps just one phase after receiving the re-start hands Tigers a scrum on the home side's 22m line. 

One phase off it and Matt Smith has the ball ripped from his hands, before the Leicester side react to the turnover and hold up Wasps in the maul. A second chance for Tigers now, with scrum inside the home side's 22. 

CONVERSION - WASPS

Umaga again has no trouble with the conversion attempt and the home side now lead by 19 points as we approach the half hour mark here in Coventry. 

TRY - WASPS

The home side register their bonus-point try through lock Marcus Garratt, with the second-rower making a lunge for the line from the back of the ruck just inches out. 

27

WASPS AGAIN INSIDE TIGERS 22

The home side find themselves back inside the attacking zone just minutes after scoring their third try, finding space on the edges of the Tigers defence. 

CONVERSION - WASPS

Umaga adds the extra points from in front to extend the home side's lead to 12 points after 26 minutes. 

TRY - WASPS

Off the back of an impressive rumble up field in less than a handful of phases, the home side are in for their third of the afternoon, and second for Rob Miller, after the fullback steps his way through the first and second line of defence for Tigers to run in from 22m out. 

20

SIMMONS CLEARS BRILLIANTLY

The Tigers scrum-half Harry Simmons clears the decks brilliantly with his left-boot from the base of the ruck and an error at the back in the attempt to take it from Wasps hands Leicester a scrum inside the home side's half. 

19

ERRORS A PLENTY

Leicester knock-on in the air at the set-piece and Wasps find themselves on the attack again inside the Tigers 22, however the home side knock-on themselves just a few phases after and it will be a Tigers scrum 15 out from their line. 

18

EASY METRES FOR WASPS

The home side find themselves inside the Tigers 22 just sixty seconds after their second score but the attack is ended after a brilliant one-on-one tackle from Harry Simmons on his scrum-half opponent, Craig Hampson sees the Wasps captain picked up and pushed over the touch-line. 

CONVERSION - WASPS

Umaga lands this attempt and Wasps now lead by five, 12-7, after 17 minutes. 

TRY - WASPS

The home side find themselves with a numerical advantage out wide to the right hand side and move it quickly through the hands for fullback Rob Miller to dive over, after receiving a very fancy flick pass out the back from back-rower Will Owen. 

15

END-TO-END EFFORTS

Both teams exchanging territory advantages following the Wasps try through errors of the other and the pitch is certainly getting a work out already this afternoon - and looks that way too! 

12

CONVERSION UNSUCCESSFUL

The Tigers remain in the lead as Wasps fly-half Jacob Umaga fails to land the conversion from 15 in from touch. 

TRY - WASPS

The home side are on the board for the first time today, taking full advantage of the Tigers error inside their own half, as they cross through winger Marcus Watson on the left flank just a handful of phases following the line-out deep inside Leicester's half. 

9

CLEARING ERROR

At the first ruck after receiving the re-start, Tigers clear through a box kick and it is out on the full. Wasps line-out on Tigers 22m. 

CONVERSION - TIGERS

George Worth makes it a seven point lead after nine minutes as he adds the extra two points through the conversion. 

TRY - TIGERS

After a strong maul off the 5m line-out, Tigers bring the ball to the midfield and just two phases following find their way over the Wasps line through back-rower Luke Hamilton. 

6

NO ADVANTAGE

Advantage not played and we're back for the penalty. 

Worth kicks for the line. Tigers line-out, 5m out. 

6

TIGERS WORKING THEIR WAY FORWARD

Leicester slowly building phases towards the Wasps line with an advantage in hand for offside from Tommy Taylor.

5

NO TRY - HELD UP

The replay shows Simmons is held-up and Tigers will feed the scrum 5m out from the Wasps line. 

4

POTENTIAL TRY - TIGERS?!

After a strong showing up field the Tigers may have crossed for their first through scrum-half Harry Simmons, after the No.9 took a quick-tap just 5m out after Leicester received a penalty at the ruck. 

2

RE-SET SCRUM

A second attempt at the scrum after the ball came 'out the sam tunnel' is followed by a free-kick for Tigers, inside the Wasps half. 

2

KNOCK-ON FROM WASPS

The home side work it forward through a handful of phases up field towards the half-way line but Tigers defensive pressure forces a knock-on.

Scrum Tigers. 

1

WE ARE UNDERWAY!

George Worth gets this fixture underway, kicking-off deep in to Wasps half. 

0

TEAMS TAKE TO THE FIELD

Matt Smith leads the Tigers on to pitch, followed by the home side a little while after ... mind games have begun! 

0

WEATHER REPORT

It's four degrees and the sun is shining here in Coventry today ... and why wouldn't it be? The Tigers are in town!! 

0

COMING TO YOU FROM 'COV'

Good afternoon Tigers Fans and welcome to today's Matchday LIVE coverage of our clash with Wasps in the fourth round of this season's Anglo-Welsh Cup. 


Tigers Lineup

Starting XV

Subs

Jimmy Stevens
16
Jimmy Stevens
Facundo Gigena
17
Facundo Gigena
19
Henri Lavin
20
Henri Lavin
Will Yarnell
21
Will Yarnell
Sam Wager
22
Sam Wager

Opposition Lineup

Starting XV

15
Rob Miller
14
Owain James
13
Brendan Macken
12
11
Marcus Watson
10
9
Craig Hampson
1
Tom West
2
Tommy Taylor
3
Will Stuart
4
Marcus Garratt
5
Will Rowlands
6
Will Owen
7
James Seabrook
8
Jack Willis

Subs

16
Antonio Harris
17
George Thornton
18
Jack Higgins
19
20
Andy Saull
21
Joe Simpson
22
Cameron Anderson
23
Josh Bassett

Team news: Anglo Welsh- Cup Round 4

Matt Smith will lead out Leicester Tigers against Wasps in Coventry on Sunday (1.00pm) in the fourth round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

Tigers are the holders of the Anglo-Welsh Cup and go into the weekend level on points with pool leaders Newcastle Falcons who face Gloucester at home on Saturday afternoon.

The starting line-up includes seven players with links to the Tigers academy, ranging from skipper Smith, who now has 215 first-team appearances to his name, to debutant Cameron Jordan. There are three more academy prospects among the replacements plus graduate Jimmy Stevens who has played at London Irish and Nottingham since making his Leicester debut in the 2011/12 season.

Luke Hamilton, who has been with the Scotland squad this week, joins Smith in providing the experience in the line-up alongside Tom Brady, Jonah Holmes and Italy international prop Michele Rizzo.

Tigers also include Declan Cusack and New Zealand-born back-rower Adam Batt on loan from Doncaster Knights and there is a place among the replacements for Oxford University student Charlie Pozniak.

“There were some young players who put in strong performances against Cardiff Blues last week and winning the game was great,” said Tigers coach Geordan Murphy.

“The defence was really sharp at times, the boys wanted to be in there and imposing themselves physically, and that was great to see.

“We’ve got a lot of players away, with six in the under-20s squads and four with England at the Six Nations, and there are a few injuries, but there are opportunities for young players to go out and play. We’ve always tried to develop and build players in this competition and these guys  have an opportunity to go out and represent us this weekend.”

Sunday’s match is scheduled for live broadcast by BT Sport.

Leicester Tigers (v Wasps, away, Sunday 1.00pm)

15 Declan Cusack

14 Tom Brady

13 Matt Smith (c)

12 Charlie Thacker

11 Jonah Holmes

10 George Worth

9 Harry Simmons

1 Michele Rizzo

2 Jake Kerr

3 Chris Baumann

4 Cameron Jordan

5 Joe Maksymiw

6 Luke Hamilton

7 Adam Batt

8 Fred Tuilagi

Replacements

16 Jimmy Stevens

17 Facundo Gigena

18 Ben Betts

19 Charlie Pozniak

20 Henri Lavin

21 Will Yarnell

22 Sam Wager

23 Mathew Tait

Wasps: 15 Rob Miller, 14 Owain James, 13 Brendan Macken, 12 Sam Spink, 11 Marcus Watson, 10 Jacob Umaga, 9 Craig Hampson; 1 Tom West, 2 Tommy Taylor, 3 Will Stuart, 4 Marcus Garratt, 5 Will Rowlands, 6 Will Owen, 7 James Seabrook, 8 Jack Willis
Replacements: 16 TJ Harris, 17 George Thornton, 18 Jack Higgins, 19 Guy Borrowdale, 20 Andy Saull, 21 Joe Simpson, 22 Cameron Anderson, 23 Josh Bassett
 

Cup preview: Tigers away to Wasps

Tom Youngs scores a try on Tigers' last visit to the Ricoh Arena face Wasps
Tom Youngs scores a try on Tigers' last visit to the Ricoh Arena face Wasps

Leicester Tigers make a second trip of the season to the Ricoh Arena in Coventry on Sunday to face Wasps in Round 4 of the Anglo-Welsh Cup. Kick-off is at 1.00pm.

Tigers are level on points with leaders Newcastle Falcons in Pool 4 as they defend the trophy won for a third time last season. Wasps are third in their pool with one win from three games and cannot qualify for the semi-finals.

Falcons host Gloucester on Saturday afternoon and if clubs end the pool stages level on match points, ranking will be determined by wins, then tries, then points difference. Click here for the full pool standings.

In the semi-finals, the first-ranked club is at home to the fourth-ranked, while the second-ranked plays third-ranked. The Final is at Gloucester’s Kingsholm stadium in March. 

Team news was announced on Friday afternoon, with Tigers handing a debut to academy lock forward Cameron Jordan in a team captained by Matt Smith.

Tigers are without four players in the England squad for the start of the Six Nations as well as six players involved in the Under-20s Six Nations. But back-rower Luke Hamilton is included after being released from the Scotland squad.

Wasps include two former Tigers academy players in fly-half Jacob Umaga and flanker Will Owen, while senior players Tommy Taylor and Josh Barrett are in the squad on their return from injury.

Tigers were beaten 32-25 in the Aviva Premiership meeting between the sides earlier this season, with a last-minute score settling an enthralling encounter, and have lost the last five matches between the clubs in all competitions. The cup holders have, though, lost just two of their last nine ties in the competition and head into Round 4 on the back of a 24-12 victory over Cardiff Blues last weekend.

“It was an okay performance against the Blues,” said Tigers coach Geordan Murphy. “But I thought we had more gears to go to.

“The focus in this competition is development and we have some talented youngsters who need to play and have opportunities to pull on the shirt and learn and grow.

“Wasps have been similar to ourselves in the way they’ve selected teams so it’ll be two young teams going hard at it. It’s a big cup game and we want a strong performance.”

Tigers will be in the club’s white alternate kit on Sunday.

Referee for Sunday is Ben Breakspear. The 20-year-old from Abercynon has worked his way through the levels in Welsh rugby while also studying chemistry at Cardiff University. 

Kick-off is at 1.00pm and there is live coverage on BT Sport. Or keep in touch with all of the action using the Tigers official Matchday Live service on the club app or Tigers’ social media pages.

Matt Smith will lead out Leicester Tigers against Wasps in Coventry on Sunday (1.00pm) in the fourth round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

Tigers are the holders of the Anglo-Welsh Cup and go into the weekend level on points with pool leaders Newcastle Falcons who face Gloucester at home on Saturday afternoon.

The starting line-up includes seven players with links to the Tigers academy, ranging from skipper Smith, who now has 215 first-team appearances to his name, to debutant Cameron Jordan. There are three more academy prospects among the replacements plus graduate Jimmy Stevens who has played at London Irish and Nottingham since making his Leicester debut in the 2011/12 season.

Luke Hamilton, who has been with the Scotland squad this week, joins Smith in providing the experience in the line-up alongside Tom Brady, Jonah Holmes and Italy international prop Michele Rizzo.

Tigers also include Declan Cusack and New Zealand-born back-rower Adam Batt on loan from Doncaster Knights and there is a place among the replacements for Oxford University student Charlie Pozniak.

“There were some young players who put in strong performances against Cardiff Blues last week and winning the game was great,” said Tigers coach Geordan Murphy.

“The defence was really sharp at times, the boys wanted to be in there and imposing themselves physically, and that was great to see.

“We’ve got a lot of players away, with six in the under-20s squads and four with England at the Six Nations, and there are a few injuries, but there are opportunities for young players to go out and play. We’ve always tried to develop and build players in this competition and these guys  have an opportunity to go out and represent us this weekend.”

Leicester Tigers (v Wasps, away, Sunday 1.00pm)

15 Declan Cusack

14 Tom Brady

13 Matt Smith (c)

12 Charlie Thacker

11 Jonah Holmes

10 George Worth

9 Harry Simmons

1 Michele Rizzo

2 Jake Kerr

3 Chris Baumann

4 Cameron Jordan

5 Joe Maksymiw

6 Luke Hamilton

7 Adam Batt

8 Fred Tuilagi

 

Replacements

16 Jimmy Stevens

17 Facundo Gigena

18 Ben Betts

19 Charlie Pozniak

20 Henri Lavin

21 Will Yarnell

22 Sam Wager

23 Mathew Tait

Wasps: 15 Rob Miller, 14 Owain James, 13 Brendan Macken, 12 Sam Spink, 11 Marcus Watson, 10 Jacob Umaga, 9 Craig Hampson; 1 Tom West, 2 Tommy Taylor, 3 Will Stuart, 4 Marcus Garratt, 5 Will Rowlands, 6 Will Owen, 7 James Seabrook, 8 Jack Willis
Replacements: 16 TJ Harris, 17 George Thornton, 18 Jack Higgins, 19 Guy Borrowdale, 20 Andy Saull, 21 Joe Simpson, 22 Cameron Anderson, 23 Josh Bassett
 

Form Guide
Wasps
Form
LWLLL
Last Match
Lost to Toulouse 27-42
Past Meeting
Won 41-35
Form
Last Match
Past Meeting
Leicester Tigers
Form
LLLLL
Last Match
Lost to Racing 11-34
Past Meeting
Lost 35-41