Leicester Tigers wing – and occasional back-rower – Nemani Nadolo says it was important to ‘make some amends’ after another short turnaround in the Gallagher Premiership.
The men in green, white and red took Derby Day honours against Northampton Saints in Round 20 on Sunday following a midweek loss at Wasps only four days prior.
And for Nadolo, in his first taste of the East Midlands Derby, four league points were just as important as getting one over on the club’s fiercest rivals.
“The most important thing was we got a result,” he told LeicesterTigers.com. “We needed to make some amends from the last game.
“That was not good enough for our standards. And also, too, to give something back to the supporters that we know haven’t been happy with our performances.
“With this game being a big derby, we wanted to make sure that we could play well and do better than the last game, and we did that.”
Good shift from us forwards today. 👀— nemzy (@nemani_nadolo) September 13, 2020
🇦🇷 🇿🇦 🇼🇸 🏴 🏴 pic.twitter.com/e10KTaPPI1
But Tigers didn’t make it easy for themselves.
After conceding a yellow card on their own lines – and then another – Nadolo and fellow back Matt Scott were called into the pack to help protect the club’s enviable record at scrum-time.
“We were down on numbers, and I’m sure the boys won’t tell you this but if it wasn’t for me and Matt Scott we wouldn’t have won that penalty, so I think the forwards owe us a beer,” he joked.
“They might tell you otherwise. But you’ve got to celebrate those moments and take the good when you can.
“I really enjoyed myself and love any time I can get in the scrum, and if we can get a penalty there then that makes it even better.”
Now Tigers have a full week’s preparation for the quarter-finals of the European Challenge Cup, with Castres Olympique the visitors to Welford Road on Sunday (September 20, 3.00pm).
Nadolo continued: “European competition is important for us. We’ve got a big week to prepare for Castres – I’ve played them plenty of times as they’re kind of a derby for my old club, Montpellier – and they’re big boys.
“They play one-off rugby and they’re big-time players who wait for big things to happen.
“We’ve just got to make sure that we stick to our game plan, stick to our defence – which is coming along really well – and since they’re a team that plays on passion, if we can take that away we’re going to be in good stead to play well.
“It’ll certainly be a very different game, completely different to the Premiership from what I can see, so we’ll need to make sure we front up and put in another 80-minute performance.”