Wing Hamilton provided an excellent finish to a sweeping move in the 23rd minute to get Tigers fully on to the front foot in a vital win at Welford Road. It was his seventh score of the season, but his first in the Guinness Premiership.
“It was the best try we’ve scored all season,” said Cockerill.
“Calum Green, who’s just 19 and with limited experience at this level, nicked the lineout on one side of the pitch, then we played the ball well to use the space across the pitch, Lote [Tuqiri] took it on and Scott finished very well.”
Alesana Tuilagi opened the scoring in the sixth minute and, after Hamilton’s sprint into the right-hand corner which had the 23,314-strong crowd on its feet, Tigers added a third first-half score from Martin Castrogiovanni before George Chuter dived over in the last 10 minutes to snatch the bonus point.
Guinness man of the match Castrogiovanni said: “We didn’t play well last week at Northampton and we needed to come back and turn up physically, and that is what we did today.”
The Italian prop intercepted an Irish pass in midfield to run in from 20 metres for his fist try of the season and said: “I ran more than 10 metres, I never do that in my life – that is like a wing running the full pitch!
“Opportunities to score do not come very often for a prop, so it is happy days!”