Leicester Tigers extended their unbeaten run in the Under-18 League with a 31-22 victory over Worcester Warriors Academy at Welford Road on Saturday.
A hat-trick from Jake Sterland and a try from fly-half Charlie Titcombe secured a fifth successive victory for the Tigers to extend their lead in the northern conference table with one round remaining in the regular league programme.
Titcombe supplied the breakthrough score on 17 minutes and added the conversion before wing Sterland opened his account, racing to a chip kick to beat the defence and run in under the posts. Again Titcome added the extras.
Just three minutes later, Sterland had his second when a break from centre Cormac Calnan took the attack into the Warriors half and his offload gave the wing space to run in the try and Titcombe’s conversion gave the defending league champions a 21-point half-time lead.
Tigers were quick out of the blocks in the second half as they held on to ball to build pressure in the Worcester 22 before a Crossfield kick was collected by Sterland to run in and complete his treble as well as supplying the try bonus point. Titcombe stretched the lead to 28 points with the conversion.
Worcester responded immediately as a penalty took them into the Tigers 22 and scrum-half Ollie Wynn found a gap to run in for their opening points. Finn Smith hits the post with the conversion.
The visitors built some pressure with an attacking lineout and pushed their way over from a driving maul with Joe Richardson dotting down in the corner. Smith added the conversion.
After a Titcombe penalty – and a Worcester yellow card for a high tackle – the Warriors regained territory in attack and, although they were were held out almost on the tryline, quick ball out of the ruck gave James Mann the chance to dive over for a third try.
And the visitors also claimed the final points of the match as they chipped ahead from halfway and, when Wynn found a gap around a ruck, he darted over for their bonus point score.
The conversion from Smith went wide as Tigers brought the game to a close with a nine-point win.
Thank you to all the fans who joined us at Welford Road for today's academy match against Worcester.
FULL TIME AT WELFORD ROAD
It's three tries to Worcester in the final quarter here at Welford Road as they claim a bonus point try in the last play of the game.
Tigers get three points from a penalty but the early lead keeps Tigers in front despite the Worcester fight back and secures the 31-22 win.
TRY A PIECE
Tigers score minutes into the second-half as a cross field kick finds Sterland who runs in for his third try of the match, Titcombe adds the con.
Worcester respond with pressure in Tigers half and the scrum-half Ollie Wynn is quick off the scrum to score and make it 28-5 to Tigers.
SECOND HALF KICKS OFF
Tigers Charlie Titcombe kicks-off the second-half here at Welford Road.
HALF-TIME AT WELFORD ROAD
Tigers get two quick scores towards the end of the half to take a 21-0 lead at half-time through winger Jake Sterland, both converted by Charlie Titcombe.
TIGERS WITH AN EARLY LEAD
Tigers with the first points of the afternoon as mounting pressure in the Worcester 22 sees Tigers create the space for scrum-half and co- captain Sam Edwards to find a gap around the ruck to break through before offloading to Charlie Titcombe to run it in for the score.
Titcombe also added the conversion to make it 7-0 after 18 minutes.
KICK-OFF AT WELFORD ROAD
The action has started here as Worcester fly-half Finn Smith kicks-off and get us underway at Welford Road.
We start the action today at Welford Road as the Tigers Academy take on Worcester Warriors.
The teams have finished their warm-ups and we are just a few minutes away from kick-off.