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Tigers ABC to Z: G is for Glasgow, Goode & grounds

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The latest in our Tigers ABC to Z series focuses on the letter G.G is for Glasgow Leicester Tigers beat Glasgow 90-19 at Welford Road in a Heineken Cup play-off clash in November 1997 to set a series of club records, including Tigers’ highest ever score in Europe.   The 71-point margin remains Tigers’ biggest victory margin in Europe and the 14 tries scored that day is also a record.   Michael Horak scored four of those tries from full-back, a record for one game that he holds jointly with Tom Varndell, who scored four times against ASM Clermont Auvergne in the 2005/06 competition. For the record, Joel Stransky (3), Richard Cockerill (2), Austin Healey, Will Greenwood, Leon Lloyd, Martin Corry and Dean Richards also crossed the whitewash.   As well as scoring a hat-trick of tries, Stransky kicked 10 conversions, a club record for the competition. And his personal points tally of 35 is also a record.   Good luck charm Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill was a good luck charm as a player, according to the new Tigers History Book. It records that Cockerill won 204 of the 262 games he played, a 77.9 per cent winning record, the best for anyone who has made more than 100 appearances for Tigers.   Paul Dodge has won the most games with Tigers, 316 in 437 appearances.   G is for Goode Former fly-half Andy Goode holds more of Tigers’ European records, including that of the club’s all-time leading point scorer in European competition   Goode scored 406 points for Tigers in Europe and was the club’s top scorer in the Heineken Cup in each of the seasons from 2004/05 to 2007/08. And his two drop goals against Pau in the pool stage of the 2000/01 tournament are also a club record for the number of drop goals in a European game.   Goode was the starting fly-half in that season’s Heineken Cup Final win over Stade Francais and was in the squad that successfully defended the title with victory over Munster the following year.    Player of the season in 2004/05, Goode kicked a club record 11 conversions in the 83-10 victory against Newcastle Falcons.   In all, his 1,799 points for Tigers – made up of 29 tries, 275 conversions, 335 penalties and 33 drop goals – put Goode third on the club’s all-time list.   As well as the club’s leading scorer in Europe, Goode is the top scorer in the Anglo-Welsh Cup and second behind Tim Stimpson for Premiership points scored.   Goode also holds the record for most appearances in the No10 shirt (as opposed to the letter J shirt) for Tigers with 160.   G is for grounds Welford Road is an iconic ground in world rugby but it was not the Tigers first home. Leicester Football Club began life on the Belgrave Cricket & Cycle Ground in Belgrave Road. The new Tigers History Book documents that Tigers played there in three spells, winning 48 and drawing 10 of the 84 games they played there.   Victoria Park played host to Tigers in two spells, the first of which was for one and a half seasons from January 1881 and the second between 1883/84 and 1887/88. Leicester won 42 and lost 12 of the 59 games they played at Victoria Park.   The club moved to Welford Road after signing a 10-year lease on the site now occupied by the current ground in 1892.   The Tigers History Book states: “Work began immediately; £1,100 was spent preparing an entirely new playing area, and permission was given to transfer the stand erected on the old Belgrave Cricket & Cycle Ground to the new site.”   The ground was opened with a game against Leicestershire Rugby Union on September 10 1892. It has grown beyond all recognition since and the latest work on the site, the redevelopment of the Clubhouse Stand, will take capacity up to just short of 26,000 when it opens later this year.   Tigers have also played six games on what is now known as Nelson Mandela Park, behind the stadium in Welford Road. In October 1967, the home game against Cheltenham was played at Stoneygate RFC in Covert Lane, Scraptoft because Welford Road hosted the game between the Midlands Counties and New Zealand.   And Leicester City’s stadium, now known as the King Power Stadium, has been Tigers’ home ground on four occasions, including the 2009 Heineken Cup quarter-final v Bath, the final regular Premiership game of the season against Bristol and the Premiership semi-final v Bath while the North Stand was being constructed. The Heineken Cup semi-finals of 2005 and 2007, which were played on the ground, were technically at a neutral venue.