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STAT ATTACK | Veainu shines in attack

Leicester Tigers full-back Telusa Veainu has confirmed his place among Premiership Rugby’s best attacking players with his performances in the first half of the season.

Statistics from sport analysts OPTA place Veainu near the top of the charts in three key areas tracked in the first 13 rounds of the Gallagher Premiership.

His total of 716 metres made across his nine appearances so far put him fourth overall, behind only Gabriel Ibitoye (Harlequins), Taqele Naiyaravoro (Northampton Saints) and Charles Piutau (Bristol Bears).

The Tigers full-back, who also featured in Tonga’s Rugby World Cup campaign at the start of the season, has made 107 carries – the sixth-most of any back – and has beaten 33 defenders.

He has made a difference on the scoreboard, too, with tries in the draw against Harlequins at Twickenham and the Welford Road win over Wasps.

But his pair of tries, plus a third against Calvisano in European competition, are not enough to put him among the club’s top scorers for the season so far, with Jonah Holmes leading the way on eight – four of which came against French club Pau.

Jonah Holmes Pau
Jonah Holmes is one of just six Tigers players to score four or more tries in a professional game.

Holmes is closely followed in the try-scoring charts by fellow wing Jonny May (six) and scrum-half Ben White (five).

A total of 25 different players have registered the club's 55 tries in all competitions so far this season, with Noel Reid leading the way among last summer's signings with four.

England international May remains Tigers’ top try-scorer in the Premiership season, though, with the wing scoring twice against both Exeter Chiefs and Bristol Bears for a total of four league tries.

And with international call-ups keeping the 29-year-old to just four Premiership appearances so far this season, his 12 clean breaks put him 17th overall on the league list but behind only players available to their clubs during the Guinness Six Nations period.

Kyle Eastmond has ensured the Tigers backs are playing their part in defence, too, with the centre winning seven turnovers in the 13 Premiership rounds to date.

He is the only back in the top 25 players for turnovers, and sits alongside players like Will Skelton (Saracens), Ben Curry (Sale Sharks) and Nathan Hughes (Bristol Bears).

Check LeicesterTigers.com on Saturday (March 21) as we break down the statistics around the forward pack so far this season.