The scrum-half captained Tigers for the first time in Saturday’s trip to the Twickenham Stoop and said he was helped in his role by a number of natural leaders within the squad.
“It was an honour to be captain of this team,” Mele said. “It’s really an honour to see my name next to George Chuter or Geordan Murphy or Toby Flood. I really appreciated it and enjoyed the role.
“It didn’t change me as a player on the pitch. I tried to talk to every player, whether they are an experienced player or inexperienced player, and encourage them and the team.
“When I was told, straight after training I rang my father and told him I was captain at the weekend.
“I was surprised because I have played 15 games for Tigers so to be named captain, I really appreciated it.
“We have natural leaders on the pitch like Rob Hawkins, Sebastian de Chaves, Thomas Waldrom, Matt Smith and Scott Hamilton as well. I had a lot of players around me who helped me and it made my work a lot easier.”
Tigers conclude their pool fixtures in the LV= Cup against Bath Rugby at Welford Road on Friday (7.45pm kick-off).
The 20-6 defeat at Quins left Tigers in third place in Pool 2. Tigers could still qualify for the semi-finals with victory against Bath, depending on the results for fellow Pool 2 teams Sale Sharks and Exeter Chiefs.
But Mele says Tigers have to concentrate on their game first and foremost.
“We need to focus on the next job against Bath at home,” he said. “It’s going to be tough.”
“It will be nice to be back at Welford Road. Every game we play on the Welford Road pitch we really enjoy.
“It’s good for the players who have not played a lot of rugby in the Aviva Premiership and the Heineken Cup. It’s a good challenge for us to try to get the result and, hopefully, reach the LV= Cup semi-final.”
Tigers are offering free upgrades on junior season tickets for Friday's fixture against Bath Rugby in the LV= Cup.
If you hold season tickets for under-10s or juniors, or for children as part of a family season ticket, the club will exchange these for adult tickets free of charge so you can enjoy the match with family and friends if this 7.45pm kick-off is too late for younger members.
We hope this is another way for the Tigers family to get the most out of their season tickets.
To upgrade a season ticket for this game, please phone the Tigers ticket office on 0844 856 1880 (option 2) or email us [email protected]
Please note that all upgrades will require the issue of a replacement paper ticket.
LV= Cup pool round fixtures are included in all Leicester Tigers season tickets. Match tickets are available now for all other supporters and hospitality is also available on 0116 217 1215.
The Tigers ticket office is open 8.30am-5pm weekdays, until 8pm Wednesdays and 9am-5pm Saturdays. Or book online any time.