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Australia face Tigers test says Tuqiri

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Australia can expect a clash of Test match intensity when they take on Tigers at Welford Road, according to former Leicester favourite Lote Tuqiri.

Tuqiri, who has been capped by Australia in both rugby union and rugby league, became a hugely popular figure at Tigers during a spell here last season.

The wing made 14 appearances for Tigers after making his debut against world champions South Africa last season.

He recalls the roar of the Welford Road crowd and the pride in the Tigers shirt on that never-to-be-forgotten night and warned that the Wallabies will face a massive challenge on Tuesday, November 9 (7.30pm).

“That South Africa game was unbelievable,” said Tuqiri. “Our guys played with pride and that was great. The roar of the crowd and the guys on the Terrace gave it to you as well, I couldn’t believe it.

“It was like a Test match.

“I know that the Wallabies will certainly feel it’s a Test match.”

Tuqiri was capped 67 times by the Wallabies before making the switch back to rugby league in the summer when he returned to Australia to play for Wests Tigers. His form has been rewarded with a call up to the Kangaroos squad for the Four Nations tournament.

But Tuqiri still keeps an eye on the union game and believes Tigers are perfect opponents for Australia with next year’s World Cup in mind.

“Australia are getting better,” said Tuqiri. “I think they showed that in the Tri Nations series that has just finished over here. They have picked a fair squad to come over there and give not only England, but the Leicester Tigers a good go at Welford Road.

“They are building towards the World Cup next year. These are building blocks and giving guys experience at a high level and of a different sort of game to that in the Southern Hemisphere.”

Tickets for the game on Tuesday, November 9 (7.30pm) are still available from the Tigers ticket office at Welford Road, on the ticket hotline 0844 856 1880 or online by clicking here