Leicester Tigers chairman Peter Tom has congratulated fellow Premiership clubs Exeter Chiefs and Bristol Bears after the English teams claimed victories in this season’s Heineken Champions Cup and Challenge Cup competitions.
Speaking to LeicesterTigers.com, Tom praised the Tigers opponents during the challenging, interrupted 2019/20 campaign.
“It has been a long, tough and challenging season for rugby at all levels of the game,” said Tom.
“To both Exeter and Bristol, I say congratulations on achieving European glory, especially under the circumstances we have all faced in 2020."
This season has thrown up challenges the professional game has never faced before now and so, for both European titles to be in England, it is a reflection of our resilience as Premiership clubs and strength of the competitionLeicester Tigers Chairman, Peter Tom CBE
Tom, who has overseen two European title victories in his time as and administrator of Tigers, knows what sacrifices and commitment is required to achieve success in cross-border competitions.
“Success in professional rugby takes a lot, from a lot of people and to all at both the Bears and Chiefs, we congratulate them on their efforts and sacrifice to achieve this,” said the Tigers chairman.
“I have shared my congratulations privately with my counterparts, Tony Rowe and Chris Booy, for their efforts also.”
The Tigers Chairman believes the success of fellow English clubs is something that shows the strength of the game and resilience of Premiership outfits, following the most challenging season in recent memory.
“This season has thrown up challenges the professional game has never faced before now and so, for both European titles to be in England, it is a reflection of our resilience as Premiership clubs and strength of the competition,” added Tom.
“There are still many challenges ahead, of which have been well documented, and the outpouring of support for two English clubs shows the importance of our teams to supporters and communities, who can now share in this success.”
However, the Leicester Tigers chairman did admit that while he was “cheering on” his fellow countrymen in their respective finals, it did not take long to come back to the job at hand - on and off the pitch - at home.
“I was certainly cheering for them but, almost immediately at full-time, was reminded that it was not us, Leicester Tigers, out there playing for a trophy in a final,” he said.
“And, as every single person at our club knows, we strive for success and our focus now on the pitch is to get back to competing for trophies in every competition we play.
“The players will return to training in the coming weeks and start their next chapter in this new journey we are on.
“Our role, off the pitch, is to provide them every opportunity to be successful and we are seeing the incredible, hard work off our non-rugby staff paying off this week, with important commercial announcements for our club, like this morning's confirmed rebrand for our stadium to Mattioli Woods Welford Road stadium.
“We are very fortunate to have partners that share in our vision, who understand what we are about and Mattioli Woods, another local organisation, have shown tremendous, vital support for us at this time, like all of our partners have.
“As a club, we are extremely grateful and look forward to this new chapter in our period with Ian and his teams at Mattioli Woods.”