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Academy News

WATCH | Tigers Cubs kick off summer under Smith

The Tigers academy have kicked off their pre-season programme in preparation for the 2019/20 U18 League season under new head coach Matt Smith.

LTTV was there and followed one of the first sessions of the summer under Smith, who retired as a professional player at the conclusion of last season, and watched on as he and fellow coaches Tom Harrison, fellow former player David Mélé and Greg Mannion put the next generation of Tigers players through their paces.

Speaking at the conclusion of the session, Smith told LTTV he's enjoying his new life in the game and impressed with the effort of the youngsters so far under tough conditions.

"I'm really enjoying it ... and am excited for the year ahead," said Smith.

"It's more of a physical session to get them out of their comfort zone."

The 228-game Tiger is not the only new face in the coaching ranks, with his former team-mate Mélé announced as a pathway coach at the club in the opening weeks of the pre-season.

"David, the little Frenchman has come back ... it has been brilliant," Smith told LTTV.

In his own, old-school style, Smith is instilling a sense of toughness in the young Tigers during the opening weeks of the summer slog and admits it isn't making him the most popular man in the squad.

"I am probably the most hated man in Leicester ... but it's good for them in the long run," he said.

"They need to get used to training at that high intensity ... it's not rocket science, it's about working hard.

"As soon as they become a team, the better."

Watch the full interview with Smith and get a behind-the-scenes look at the Tigers academy pre-season session on LTTV in the video above.