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'Maori could be our toughest international test'

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Geordan Murphy says the clash with the Maori All Blacks could be the toughest international test yet for Leicester Tigers.

The Maori All Blacks bring their world-famous Haka to Welford Road on Tuesday, November 13. It follows huge international clashes at Welford Road with rugby superpowers South Africa and Australia in recent years.

The Springboks helped Tigers celebrate the opening of the new Caterpillar Stand in 2009. Lucas Amorosino scored the Tigers try and Ben Youngs kicked the rest of the points in a 22-17 victory over the then World Champions.

Two-time World Cup winners Australia were the visitors in 2010 and trailed Tigers 15-13 with just eight minutes remaining. However, Berrick Barnes kicked eight points late in the game with a penalty, a drop goal and the conversion of an injury-time try to give Australia a 26-15 victory.

Murphy, who captained Ireland for the first time against the Maori All Blacks in his country’s tour to New Zealand in 2010, predicts another fantastic Welford Road night.

“These international occasions under the lights at Welford Road are fantastic,” says Murphy. “Everyone remembers the South Africa game. It was the official opening of the Caterpillar Stand and we managed to win a very close game in a fantastic atmosphere.

“Australia turned up the following year and to have so many Test players playing was great. We probably should have won that one too but we let a lead slip late on.

“This will probably be the toughest test. The Maori All Blacks are very proud and that’s what their Haka is all about, bringing that pride to the game. We want to show them how proud we are of the Tigers shirt.”

And Geordan added that seeing the Haka performed at Welford Road would be worth the admission fee alone.

“I love the Haka,” he said. “It is a great spectacle and I think it is fantastic for world rugby. I for one am excited about it.

“Children all over the world love it. It will be amazing to have it performed at Welford Road – it will be worth the price of the admission just to see it.”

Tickets for the clash with Maori All Blacks are on sale now with prices from £20 adults and £5 juniors. Buy now from the Welford Road ticket office, on the hotline 0844 856 1880 or online by clicking here

And you can make it extra special by enjoying matchday hospitality at Welford Road. We can promise top-class hospitality so you can share the VIP experience of Welford Road with colleagues or clients, or treat family and friends to a special evening in the company of the Tigers and the Maori.

VIP hospitality is priced £156 + VAT per person and you can book your place for matchday hospitality by phoning the Tigers sales team on 0116 2171 215.