Leicester full-back Telusa Veainu explained there was a bit of mind-reading involved to put him over for Tigers’ third try in the 30-all thriller at Twickenham on Saturday.
The score, which has been nominated for Premiership Rugby’s Citizen Try of the Week, completed the comeback at HQ as Tigers fought back to level the game from a 14-point deficit to Harlequins in their Big Game.
The Tonga international said he’d seen fly-half George Ford practicing similar chips on the Oval Park training ground – and was only too grateful to gather the real thing in front of more than 75,000 supporters in Round 7.
“I’m just lucky it came off,” he laughed. “We had advantage from the scrum so we just went for it.
“The kick wasn’t a set move, but I just managed to read it off him.
“I’ve never seen anyone prepare like George, and that’s why he’s a world-class player and such a consistent performer. I’ve seen him do those kicks in training, so I just came in and managed to steal it off him!”
Telusa Veainu's try in last weekend's #GallagherPrem clash with 'Quins at Twickenham has been nominated for Premiership Rugby’s Citizen Try of the Week!— Leicester Tigers (@LeicesterTigers) December 30, 2019
VOTE ➡️ https://t.co/gI6hrJ6Pq4 pic.twitter.com/BIbwvREz20
The points were shared at Twickenham as Tigers then held out a late surge from Paul Gustard’s side, and Veainu described how the game drew out a serious dose of mental resilience.
He continued: “I think that one was more mental, if anything, and that’s definitely a good build-on.
“The boys showed a lot of character out there – we didn’t get rattled, and we had to really dig deep to come back from that.
“It’s a bit of an eerie feeling to draw, but I’m really proud of the boys to come back from that deficit.”
Supporters can vote for Veainu’s score – among a shortlist of five from the weekend’s action – for Premiership Rugby’s Try of the Week by clicking here. Voting closes at midnight this Wednesday (January 1) with the winner announced on Thursday.