Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
leicestertigers.comMattioli Woods Welford RoadContact UsTopps Tiles

Derby day preview: Saints v Tigers

Figure image
Leicester Tigers and neighbours Northampton Saints meet for the 235th time this Saturday in a local rivalry dating back more than 135 years.

Leicester had played just two games in their debut season of 1880/81 before they met Northampton for the first time and the derby meetings have grown with each subsequent season.
This time the clubs meet as the fourth and fifth-placed sides in the Aviva Premiership table, with just three games remaining in the regular league season. Only four points separate the rivals in the race for places in the Premiership semi-finals.
“It’s a big test for us again,” said Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill. “We know they are a good side and Franklin’s Gardens is a hard place to go.
“In the last couple of seasons we have lost out in games there by one score, so it is all about tiny margins. We just need to go and be at our best.
“It’s an important game for both sides – a big game for so many reasons. We have to make sure we are prepared right, and that physically and mentally we are in the right space. Then we need to make sure we can play how we can play.”
The first meeting this season went in Tigers’ favour, winning 30-27 at Welford Road in January. But it took a late penalty from Owen Williams to clinch the points after Saints had fought back from a 21-point deficit. Click here to re-live the details from that tense afternoon.
Saints have won the last two home meetings since a 22-16 win for Tigers in Round 18 of the 2013/14 season.
Referee on Saturday is Tim Wigglesworth, who has been called in as a replacement for the original appointment Matthew Carley.
Tigers have named the same starting line-up that ran out against Stade Francais in the European Champions Cup last weekend, while Saints have made four changes with recalls for Ahsee Tuala at full-back, Tom Kessell at scrum-half, former Leicester prop Kieran Brookes and skipper Tom Wood coming into the team.
BT Sport is providing live coverage of Saturday’s match, or you can keep in touch via the Tigers club website and social media. Kick-off is at 5.30pm.
There is also a local derby at under-17 level with the two club’s academy sides in action at Leicester’s Oval Park training ground at noon.

Tigers are back on Welford Road turf in Round 21 on Saturday, April 30 when Worcester Warriors are the visitors in the last home game of the regular season. kick-off is at 3pm and tickets are available now. Book in person at welford Road, phone 0116 319 8888 (option 2) or click here to book online.

Match tickets are also available now for the European Champions Cup semi-final against Racing 92 at The City Ground, Nottingham, next Sunday.