Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
leicestertigers.comMattioli Woods Welford RoadContact UsTopps Tiles

Tigers announce additions to playing squad

Figure image
Leicester Tigers have confirmed a number of additions to the playing squad for the 2014/15 season.

Fly-half Freddie Burns will arrive at Welford Road from Gloucester Rugby and will be joined by centre Seremaia Bai from Castres and Rotherham No8 Laurence Pearce as Tigers begin their preparations for the new campaign.
Tigers have also agreed moves with Italy international forwards Robert Barbieri and Leonardo Ghiraldini plus centre/wing Christian Loamanu from Benetton Treviso.
Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill said: “The signing of two international forwards adds some more Test experience and strength in depth to our squad, while Christian Loamanu will bring a physical presence and has the ability to play in a number of positions.
“Seremaia Bai brings a lot of experience in his position and we look forward to the arrival of Freddie Burns. He is a young man with a couple of seasons of Premiership rugby already under his belt as well as playing for England and he can continue his development as a player here.
“Laurence Pearce is an ambitious young back-rower who we feel can benefit from our environment and realise his potential working with a group of quality forwards here.”
Bai has spent eight years in France with Clermont Auvergne and at Castres. He collected a Top 14 title last season and scored the winning points for Castres in their semi-final win over Montpellier last weekend. With experience at fly-half and centre, he has played club rugby in Australia, New Zealand, Japan and Wales, and in 39 Tests for Fiji.
Fly-half Burns, 24, collected the Golden Boot after scoring 250 points in the Aviva Premiership during 2012/13 as well as earning his first senior caps with England. He is currently with the England training squad ahead of the summer tour to New Zealand.
Back-rower Pearce, 23, played rugby league before moving to Rotherham and has earned a reputation as a strong and physical force in the back row.
Ghiraldini, Barbieri and Loamanu all played for Benetton Treviso against Tigers in this season’s Heineken Cup.
Hooker Ghiraldini has more than 60 caps for Italy, while Canadian-born Barbieri played openside in the Six Nations but can play anywhere across the back row.
Tongan born but capped by Japan, Loamanu played on the wing for Treviso against Tigers at Welford Road last October and started at blindside flanker in the return fixture in January. He has previously had a spell with Toulon in France.