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Spencer pays tribute to powerful pack

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Leicester lock Will Spencer says the Tigers side ‘weathered the storm’ – in more ways than one – for their Gallagher Premiership victory over Wasps.

The men in green, white and red came from behind in front of their home crowd as Storm Dennis battered Welford Road on Saturday, with Greg Bateman rumbling over the whitewash off the back of a strong forward drive before Telusa Veainu sealed the deal with his 80-metre score.

“We knew before the game what kind of a match it was going to be,” Spencer explained.

“The conditions played a huge part in that. It was tough, it was uncomfortable … and when you’re in the thick of a battle like that, you love it.

“For me, personally, it’s much more entertaining than the joué games when [the ball] is going out the back and you can get stuck in. I think we did that to a man, and ground it out.”

“When you’re in the thick of a battle like that, you love it.”

Will Spencer

The gritty performance was at odds with the last Premiership win on home turf – a bonus-point win over Bristol Bears – and Spencer added that both styles illustrate a tangible improvement as Tigers continue to look up the league table.

“We spoke in the week about there being more than half of the season to go,” the 27-year-old continued.

“We know we are nowhere near where we feel this group can be, which is exciting.

“Even [against Wasps], it wasn’t pretty – there’s still a hell of a lot to improve on – but we’ll use this as a building block. We need to keep going.”

Next up is a six-day turnaround before taking on Sale Sharks under the Friday night lights at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Spencer said: “Sale pride themselves on exactly the same things as us.

“They’ve got a massive pack, they’ve got some huge boys and that’s exciting for us because they’re exactly the sort of challenges we want.

“Scrum-time, maul-time, it’s never something that clicks straight away, it’s a wearing down process – [scrum coach Boris Stankovich] speaks about that at the scrum, and [assistant coach Brett Deacon] at the lineout, that you’re not going to get the rewards early doors.

“You’ve got to put the work in and the hard graft in. We’ve got to live up to that and make sure that we match the intensity we showed against Wasps.”