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Preview: Tigers v Gloucester this Saturday

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Aviva Premiership rugby returns to Welford Road on Saturday with Leicester Tigers at home to Gloucester Rugby in Round 14 of the league season.

Just three points separate the two old rivals – their first meeting was back in the 19th Century – in the pack of clubs chasing places in the top four of the table.
Tigers and Gloucester have met on 217 previous occasions, with the Cherry and Whites leading in head-to-head scores with 106 wins to 103 by Leicester. In 106 encounters at Welford Road, Tigers lead 72-30 with four matches drawn.
Both clubs make extensive changes to the sides involved in the Anglo-Welsh Cup fixtures in recent weeks.
Tigers are without England duo Ben Youngs and Dan Cole, though Owen Williams returns from training with the Wales squad at the Six Nations and Ed Slater is available again after suspension.
Marcos Ayerza has been ruled out for 10-12 weeks with a back injury and joins Manu Tuilagi and Matt Toomua on the sidelines. New signing Maxime Mermoz is included in the matchday 23 and is in line for his first game at Welford Road as a Leicester player after previously running out there in the colours of both Perpignan and Toulon.
Gloucester include former Tigers backs Billy Twelvetrees, Henry Purdy and Andy Symons, while there is a head-to-head at fly-half for brothers Freddie and Billy Burns.
Previewing the game, Tigers head coach Aaron Mauger said: “The last two weeks have been very good for us in terms of performance and getting gametime into the players, and that means there is lots of competition for places across the squad.
“Gloucester have been going well in the last few months. They’ve got a very effective gameplan and a really balanced backline.
“This four-week block is really important for us. We’re disappointed with fifth place and we want to get back into the top four. We’ve got three games at home in the next few weeks and the opportunity is there for us to use Welford Road as a fortress.”
Referee for Sunday is Ian Tempest, in charge of his 28th Premiership fixture.
Kick-off is at 3pm and tickets are still available. Book at the Tigers ticket office. Call in at Welford Road or phone 0116 319 8888 (option 2)(open 9am-5pm Monday-Saturday) or click here to book online.
And enjoy a rugby double header at the home of the Tigers with coverage of Wales versus England (4.50pm kick-off) on the big screen on the plaza and concourse TVs.
Tigers are back on home turf next Saturday for the Aviva Premiership fixture against Bristol Rugby. This is a 3pm kick-off and tickets are available now.