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Wallabies pair back in tandem with Tigers

Australian duo Matt Toomua and Tatafu Polota-Nau have returned to training with Leicester Tigers ahead of the opening round in the Gallagher Premiership season during a break in their international duties.

Tigers centre Toomua and hooker Polota-Nau are among the most experienced members of the Australia squad and have been involved in both of the Wallabies fixtures in the Championship so far but are back at Oval Park during this fallow week in the Test programme.

“They’re back this week and they’ve trained today,” said Tigers head coach Matt O’Connor. “They’re important players for us, they are very experienced at the top end and they add a lot to us.”

Tigers open their Gallagher Premiership campaign with a trip to Exeter Chiefs on Saturday before hosting Newcastle Falcons at Welford Road in Round 2 on Saturday, September 8 (3.00pm).

O’Connor reported no fresh injury worries in the squad following Friday’s final pre-season fixture against London Irish and was delighted to see England internationals Ben Youngs, Dan Cole, Jonny May and George Ford among the senior players to some gametime as well as giving Manu Tuilagi the opportunity to get some time back on the field.

“We’ve spread gametime around the squad over the three pre-season games, and it was always the plan to give Manu some minutes on Friday,” said O’Connor.

“He was very keen to play in pre-season, he’s been really good in training and he carried that into the game.”