Back-rower Philippe Tandoh progressed through Syston RFC, Loughborough Grammar and the Tigers’ Leicestershire DPP group to earn a place in the club’s academy.
After playing football – he’s an Arsenal fan – and taekwondo, he focused on rugby, dividing his time between the second and back rows despite starting out as a prop.
“I played a lot at ‘B’ team level early on but then had a good season at under-15s and that pushed me towards the Tigers’ DPP and then academy,” he says.
Getting to know you
If you could meet a famous person, dead or alive, who would it be?
Jerry Collins, the former Al Blacks back row. He was massive in the physical parts of the game and that’s what appeals to me.
Who’s the most famous person you’ve taken a selfie with?
I haven’t got one yet but I’d like to meet Thierry Dusautoir, the France international back row. He’s a great player and his family has the same heritage as me – my dad is French and mum is from the Ivory Coast.
What would you want if you were stuck in a desert island?
A rugby ball and some music.