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Brookes ready for the challenge

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New recruit Kieran Brookes says the move to Leicester Tigers this summer is just what he needs to continue his development as a player.

The 20-year-old prop has played nearly 40 games in two years with Newcastle Falcons and will join up with Tigers at the conclusion of national duties with England Saxons at the Churchill Cup.

“I was offered a few different opportunities in different places but I thought Leicester would be the right move for me because of the chance to develop there with the emphasis the club puts on the tight five and the chance to learn from senior people and players there,” says Brookes.

“It is going to be massive challenge, I know that, but it is something I am looking forward to. It’s not all about game-time, it is about development as a player and then taking your opportunities.”

Born in Stoke and formerly with Fylde in Lancashire, Brookes played at under-16 and under-18 level with Ireland before being selected for England at under-20 age-group last year and now at Saxons level.

“It was a big decision to play for England after a couple of years with the Irish squads, but it is going well so far,” he says.

“It’s all about learning in different environments.

“I know one or two of the Leicester guys from Under-20s last year, but the first Tigers players I’ve met since I agreed the move are Jordan Crane and Billy Twelvetrees with the Saxons. Jordan has been trying to wind me up about Leicester but I can’t wait to start working at the club.”

So what can Tigers and the club’s supporters expect of a young man who has already played in all three front-row positions?

“I see myself as more of a tighthead, but I have played in all the front-row positions and I’d like to keep the options open again for the future. You never know do you?

“As a tighthead I want to scrummage well and make my tackles, but I also like to get the ball in hand a bit. I’ll just try to do my work, hit my rucks, make my tackles and see how we go.”