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Young players are learning all the time

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Fred Tuilagi says Leicester Tigers’ young players will keep their heads down and keep working hard after enjoying a taste of the action in the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

Tuilagi made his first start for the Tigers in the home Cup win over Gloucester Rugby before retaining his place at No8 for Friday’s trip to The Rec to play Bath Rugby.

Sam Lewis, Jordan Olowofela, Tommy Refell and Harry Simmons have also made their Tigers debuts in the Cup, Ben White made his first start and the likes of Joe Maksymiw and Charlie Thacker have gained more experience.

And Tuilagi says it has given them all something to work towards.

“Of course once you get the taste of playing you want a bit more,” said Tuilagi. “We will work hard, keep our heads down and see what happens.

“We are learning all the time, how to handle different situations, and we have learned a lot about ourselves.”

After leading for most of the game against Bath, Tigers were denied a second successive win in this season’s Anglo-Welsh Cup by a late penalty try.

Tuilagi said they can be proud of their efforts in front of the BT Sport cameras at a packed Recreation Ground.

“Coming into the game, as a young squad, we felt all the pressure was on them,” he said. “It was all about working for each other, that was the key messages that Harry Thacker and the coaches gave us. It was about doing it for each other, working hard and having a go.

“We felt we maybe could have won the game. There were a few situations where we maybe could have done things a little differently, but that comes with experience.”