The Ireland A fly-half will be looking to put in a commanding performance as Tigers go in search of a win that would greatly enhance their Guinness Premiership play off aspirations.
“There may be lots of changes from the cup final but, if you ask any of the players involved, they all think they deserve to be starting week-in-week-out,” says Humphreys. “We’ve got such a strong squad and the fringe players are confident in their own ability so we look at this as an opportunity to go out and there and put in a good performance.
“There’s no excuse for us being tired – it’s virtually a fresh XV from Saturday. We’ll be as fresh as they are. We went down there in the EDF Energy Cup with a very young side and we nearly turned them over despite making a few silly errors and mistakes, so we’re going down there full of confidence. We understand it’s a massive game but we look at it as an opportunity for us to play well and, hopefully, put ourselves in the frame for the rest of the season.”
The fact that tonight’s game falls so soon after the EDF Energy Cup Final loss to the Ospreys also ensures that Tigers have the perfect opportunity to bounce back in typical-Leicester fashion.
“The team as a whole feels the disappointment of the cup final but, as professional rugby players, we have to turn that around. For me, it’s never difficult to get up for a game. We’re all looking forward to it and I can’t wait to get out there. Bath have a very good side and there’s nothing better than playing against top-quality players. Butch James is a World Cup winner so I’m really looking forward to the game.”
A win over third-placed Bath would certainly help Tigers’ chances of retaining their Premiership crown but Humphreys is keen to stress that the players will be fully aware of the need not to become overwhelmed by the occasion.
“I think all the games now are like cup finals but it’s important that we don’t over react to the importance of the match. A win is very important but, regardless of what happens tonight, I believe we can still qualify for the play offs so it’s imperative that we don’t get anxious or worry too much. We need to just go out and play and then, hopefully, the result will take care of itself.”