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Rugby News

Second-half control extends home run

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Geordan Murphy's prediction that weather conditions would produce “a tight game settled by one score” was spot-on as Leicester Tigers beat Worcester Warriors 14-8 at Welford Road on Saturday.

After beating Wasps during the wet and wild weather of Storm Dennis a fortnight ago, this time it was Storm Jorge which brought bitterly cold winds to matchday and head coach Murphy thought his team handled the conditions well to secure victory.

“I suppose it wasn’t a particularly attractive game, which was what we predicted when we saw the weather,” he said. “It was never going to be a high-scoring game in the conditions, I always thought it would be tight.

“But it’s important to get wins on a day like that, especially at home."

The visitors went ahead early on before Tigers celebrated a well-taken try by Jordan Olowofela and reached half-time with the scores level at 8-8.

“The conditions were particularly difficult and we started very poorly, giving away the first three penalties and finding ourselves on our own tryline for the first 15 minutes," said Murphy.

"That can rattle you and hit your confidence, especially after a loss at Sale last week, and we had to grind out and stick to it.

“We got back into it, our discipline was good from there and we got some good territory with Johnny McPhillips playing well at 10. Ben White also kicked us out of trouble at times in the second half and you get some belief. We got the scrum going, and in those conditions the set-piece is going to be important. Our maul came into it and gave us some platform, and we finished strongly.”

The whole squad played their part, with the bench making an important impact to tighten a grip on the game as McPhillips kicked the only points of the second half.

“It’s good to have those options from the bench on the back of the work done by the starting players in the opening 60 minutes,” Murphy added.

Tigers go to Saracens in Round 13 on Saturday (1.00pm).