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Rugby News

Borthwick proud of resilience on show

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Leicester Tigers Head Coach Steve Borthwick reacts to the Gallagher Premiership semi-final win over Northampton Saints at Mattioli Woods Welford Road.

Speaking at full-time, Borthwick said: “I want to pay credit to Northampton, they pushed us all the way today.”

“They have been excellent as of late and are such a well coached side, with incredible players, who we knew would give us a big challenge.”

Borthwick admitted his side were under the pump in the early stages, which included having to make a change to the line-up within just a few minutes of the opening whistle.

“Losing Dan Kelly early saw us have to reconfigure early and adapt,” he said.

“But I was so proud of the way they adapted … especially when you consider that only five of this team have played in a semi final before now in the Premiership.

“It was a resilient performance, the players showed great fight and composure. I am really pleased with the result.”

The focus now switches to a showdown with Saracens in the Gallagher Premiership Final at Twickenham next weekend, but Borthwick says - for tonight - it is about enjoying the accomplishment of reaching the competition’s final week.

“We’ll enjoy this together, of course we will,” said Borthwick.

“I hope the fans enjoy this, they were immense today ...and helped us get the result.

“The connection with them is important and I think they see that this group is one who care about them, care about making them proud with their performances each week.

“On Monday, we’ll come in and begin preparing to play Saracens and we’ll start thinking about it then.”

Asked about the Final, Borthwick added: “We will continue to try and be the best we can be, that’s what we work hard to do.”

“I want the players, our fans and everyone at Leicester Tigers to enjoy this effort.”

The Tigers Head Coach also shared an insight into the week at the club, following the passing of Tiffany Youngs.

“Everyone is hurting, that won’t go away anytime soon,” he said.

“When the news came in, it was devastating. That won’t go away.

“Ben wanted to be out there for his team-mates, for his brother and for Leicester Tigers today and I am incredibly proud of him, as I am sure everybody is.

“You saw the ovation that the crowd gave Tiffany before the game and that says it all - her story will be an inspiration forever for so many.”