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Rugby News

Borthwick pleased by players' response to pressure

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Steve Borthwick admitted his side left points on the park in Newcastle, despite recording a 25-point victory over the Falcons.

Speaking after the game, the Leicester Tigers Head Coach admitted there were lessons to be learned for he and his squad but said he was pleased by the way his players responded to pressure.

“It was a tough game, which we knew it would be against a Falcons team at home. We didn’t convert enough of the opportunities we created for ourselves today,” said the Tigers boss.

“There were opportunities missed and we will address them, see what we need to do better and improve. We are always learning.

“I was pleased with how we started and how we finished the game. That period in the middle is something we need to look at and learn from moving forward.

“But, the players deserve an enormous amount of credit for the way in which they responded, adapted and came back in the face of so much pressure from Newcastle.”

Borthwick admitted that the squad had been placed under extra pressure in recent weeks by the coaching team in a bid to continue the development as a group.

“It has been a tough period for the players, we have tested them and challenged them,” he said.

“We won’t be stopping trying to get better, we will continue to push and push to carry this team forward.

“Next week will be another good week of training and then, the week after, we will ramp up the preparation to be thoroughly prepared to play Wasps at Mattioli Woods Welford Road.”

In the first league fixture for Leicester in Newcastle for more than three years, Borthwick also took charge for the first time at Kingston Park - in his 70th match in charge of the club.

Like the Head Coach, almost twenty of today’s Tigers side made their first appearance at Kingston Park in green, red and white, which he admitted presented another new challenge for the club.

“There were some new challenges for us today as a group,” said Borthwick.

“Only a handful of this group have ever played here in the Premiership in Newcastle for Leicester Tigers before today.

“We are still having a lot of those new challenges come up for us, as a young group, and that’s my job to prepare the players as best we can to be ready for whatever those challenges are.

“Look at the forward pack today, the average age is 25 and that’s with Dan Cole in it. There is still so much growth in and so much to learn for this group.”

Leicester Tigers are without a fixture next weekend before hosting Wasps in the final regular season of the 2021/22 Gallagher Premiership season on Saturday, June 4 at Mattioli Woods Welford Road.