Geordan Murphy described Saturday’s performance in a nine-try win over Calvisano as “full of endeavour”.
Head coach Murphy acknowledged there were still areas to work on as Leicester Tigers made it three wins in a row in the European Challenge Cup, but pointed to the positives in a 59-7 triumph over their Italian visitors, especially as the try bonus point was secured in the opening 16 minutes of the game.
“I thought the way we started was really impressive,” said Murphy. “We expected a physical start from Calvisano and to go 26 points up was hugely pleasing.
“It’s not perfect because we left opportunities out there too, but the guys were full of endeavour, the intensity and physicality were good, and when we completed we scored some good tries.”
Jonny May scored a double, with Manu Tuilagi, Sam Lewis, Tommy Reffell, Adam Thompstone, Jake Kerr, Noel Reid and Telusa Veaniu also on the mark as Tigers retained a grip on top spot in Pool 5.
Ahead of kick-off Tigers honoured the legacy of club record appearance-maker David Matthews, and Murphy said: “We talked about it before the game. David was a very special person at this club and we wanted to celebrate his life with a good performance. He was a good friend of mine and I think he would have had a wry smile and some good advice for me today, but he’d be pleased with the result.”
Tigers travel for the return fixture this weekend and Murphy is expecting another physical contest against the defending Italian league champions.
“It will be tough, they showed that they have a strong driving pack and some talent in the backs as well,” added Murphy. “They’ll be hurt on the back of the scoreline here and they’ll be well up for it. We have to be prepared for that.”