We're up to H in our series looking at the ABC to Z of all things Leicester Tigers.H is for Hambo It is 10 years since Matt Hampson, a young prop breaking into the Tigers first-team squad and representing his country, suffered a serious spinal injury while training with England Under-21s. Over the last decade, though, Hambo has drawn on the passion, grit and steely determination that defined him as an emerging talent in the world of rugby to set about inspiring others. A life member at Tigers, Hambo, as he is affectionately known, saw his accident as a new beginning, setting up his Foundation to inspire and support young people seriously injured through sport. With its motto ‘Get Busy Living’, the Matt Hampson Foundation aims to provide advice, support, relief and/or treatment for anyone suffering serious injury or disability. Hambo and his Foundation have caught the imagination of Tigers fans, rugby supporters and the wider public, as well as his teammates, who have helped to raise massive sums of money and helped to raise the Foundation’s profile as well. The next venture for the Foundation is to build their Get Busy Living Centre. Hambo’s long-held dream has been for a support, advice and rehabilitation centre, which came a step nearer last month when their chose site near Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire received planning permission. Click here for more on the Matt Hampson Foundation. H is for Haka Those supporters who were lucky enough to witness the Maori All Blacks perform their Haka at Welford Road back in 2012 will not forget it in a hurry. There have been previous Welford Road occasions at which a Haka has been performed, notably when New Zealand played Italy in the 1991 Rugby World Cup, but none had the spine-tingling intensity of that served up by the Maori on that cold November evening. Leicester fans were treated to a loud and long version of the traditional pre-match dance, which served to lay down the challenge to the Tigers players. Click here to watch it again. Tigers, without 10 players on autumn Test duty, responded magnificently to the challenge, scoring tries through Niall Morris and Adam Thompstone, plus 22 points from George Ford, to win 32-24 on a famous night at Welford Road. In doing so, Tigers became only the second team since 2003 to beat the Maori All Blacks. It was a run that stretched 23 games and included Maori victories over England, Ireland and the British & Irish Lions. H is for Hare Dusty Hare’s 394 games for Leicester Tigers put him seventh on the appearance list, but it’s as a point accumulator extraordinaire that he will be forever remembered at the club. Hare is the all-time leading scorer for the Tigers with 4,507, an astonishing 1,989 points more than second-placed John Liley. To put that into perspective, only Hare and Liley have scored at least 1,989 points for the Tigers. Hare’s 7,191 first-class points is a world record, and includes 240 points for England on his 25 appearances for his country. It included three crucial penalties in a 9-8 Five Nations win over Wales on the way to the 1980 Grand Slam. He played in the four successive John Player Cup Finals of 1978-81 and toured New Zealand with the Lions in 1983. He is for Healey Austin Healey made 248 appearances for Leicester but it was his man-of-the-match performances in the 2001 and 2002 Heineken Cup Finals for which he is best remembered in Tigers colours. It was from his break that Leon Lloyd scored the try against Stade Francais that secured Tigers’ first European title and Healey was on the mark himself against Munster a year later as Tigers became the first team to successfully defend their crown. In all Healey scored 61 tries for Tigers, plus three conversions, a penalty and six drop goals. He is tenth on Tigers’ league/Premiership appearance list (166 games) and ninth on the European list (53 games). A versatile back who played at scrum-half, fly-half, wing and full-back, Healey won 51 England caps and played in two Tests for the Lions on the 1997 tour to South Africa. H is for Hundred Cap Club A total of 209 players have started 100 matches for the Leicester Tigers, which is recognised with the award of a club cap. Julian Salvi was the 210th and most recent player to reach the landmark in 2014. He followed Ben Youngs who, with dad Nick Youngs, became only the second father-and-son combination to reach 100 starts for the club after Ian ‘Dosser’ Smith and his son Matt. The first to 100 starts was John Parsons, a former captain, who reached the landmark against Rugby in January 1888. He played in 100 of Tigers’ first 138 games and after he finished playing was club secretary and president.
Tigers ABC to Z: H is for Hambo, Hare & Healey
3 July 2015 4:30 PM
Tigers ABC to Z: H is for Hambo, Hare & Healey
3 July 2015 3:30 PM
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