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Rugby News

Kitchener: There is more to come from Tigers

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Graham Kitchener believes the bonus point win over Gloucester is a big "step forward" for the Leicester Tigers squad but admits there is still plenty "more to come" from the group.

Speaking at full time, Kitchener said: "In the first half we didn't convert the opportunities we should have, so we need to be better at that but we'll review that next week and work to improve it."

"Geordan said post match that there is 'still more to come from' us and that's definitely the case."

The second rower was also quick to praise the Leicester backline for their finishing ability in the 34-16 win, which he believes was helped along by the strong foundation laid by the Tigers pack.

"They [Leicester Tigers backline] were outstanding today, picking off weak defenders but it starts up front with us and we helped lay a good platform throughout the match," he said.

"It was a good performance and I think we converted some opportunities that in the last month or so we have left out on the pitch.

"But, we need to make sure it continues now ... although it's another step forward for us."

After heavy criticism on Leicester's defence following a disappointing start to the 2018/19 campaign, Kitchener also says the hard work being done by the playing group under the guidance of Brett Deacon is paying off.

"Brett Deacon has been driving that well and today it showed," said Kitchener.

"It started against 'Quins a few weeks ago and then again away at Bath, followed by another tight performance against Gloucester today, it's good because we've discussed consistency all season and we're starting to see it."

More than 20,000 supporters packed in to Welford Road for the clash between long-time rivals Leicester and Gloucester, which Kitchener says is a "boost" to players on the pitch.

"They were amazing," said Kitchener.

"Their support was really, really good and we definitely get a boost from a packed Welford Road, cheering us on.

"It makes a huge difference when you're out there."

Tigers now face a fortnight of European fixtures, starting away to Scarlets next weekend before welcoming Ulster in Round 6 of this season's Heineken Champions Cup and Kitchener says the squad will be aiming to come away from Wales with "maximum points" in a bid to keep their play-off aspirations alive.

"We've got a couple of tough matches to come, so we need to start with maximum points against Scarlets and go from there," Kitchener said.

"We'll take the same mindset in to next week and aim to come away from Wales with the best possible outcome."

Tickets to the showdown with Irish side Ulster Rugby are still available to purchase from the Tigers Ticket Office at Welford Road or online here.