Fixtures - Top Bar

Fit-again Cole delighted to make Leicester Tigers return

Dan Cole admitted it was good to get the competitive juices flowing again as he made his long-awaited injury return in Leicester Tigers’ comeback win against Sale Sharks in the LV= Cup.

Cole has been out for the last nine months after neck surgery but stepped off the bench for his first club appearance since January to give his side a much-needed boost.

The Tigers, who snuck past London Irish 17-16 in their opening LV=Cup game last weekend, had been trailing 13-3 at the break after being overpowered by fellow Aviva Premiership Rugby side Sale.

But a second-half blitz which saw Miles Benjamin cross twice, as well tries for Matt Smith and young prospect Harry Thacker, ensured the Tigers turned the tables to triumph 29-13.

Cole, who has four times more first-team starting appearances than the total of the starting forward pack chosen on Sunday, played the last 32 minutes of the match.

And while surrounded by players from the development and academy ranks, admitted he had been impressed with what he saw.

"I made my debut in this competition, as a lot of players have. It gives you a taste of what first-team rugby is like,” he said.

"It was a real collective effort. The effort from a young team coming back was great, it was good to be part of that.

"Credit to the boys for backing up the win last week. They've put the work in off the field and now they've put a marker down for the rest of the year.

“I'm tired, but that's to be expected. I'm pleased to get out and run about again.

"The conditioning staff have been great, they've done a lot of hard work and you do as much as you can to get ready to be on the field but nothing is exactly the same until you get back on to the pitch.

"I'm pleased I'm back on the field, it's what you are here to do."

Cole’s Tigers side have endured a difficult start to this year’s Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign with three wins from six.

And the England prop insisted the Welford Road crowd had been pivotal in ensuring it was not another defeat this weekend.

"The crowd was fantastic, especially in the second half. The boys responded to that," he added.

"I think the crowd was getting bit frustrated in the first half but they were noisy in the second half and got right behind the team and the team fed off that.

"That support is what gets you going. The first half didn't go as we wanted but the spirit was great, it was about pulling together and making the hard yards and making your tackles. You put in the effort, the crowd responds and the team responds to the crowd."

 For your definitive guide to the LV= Cup click here

Be part of the rugby family at the LV= Cup Final at Franklin's Gardens, Northampton on Sunday 22 March. Visit www.northamptonsaints.co.uk for tickets
 

Latest News

Match Reaction: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall picked out back rower Joel Conlon as the stand-out player in his side’s 29-18…

Match Reaction: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Jim Mallinder backed his side to continue their push up the table after they moved into Aviva Premiership Rugby’s top…

Match Report: Northampton Saints 24 Worcester Warriors 14

Mikey Haywood scored two tries as Northampton Saints came from behind to down Worcester Warriors and move into Aviva Premiership Rugby's…

Match Report: Exeter Chiefs 36 Newcastle Falcons 14

Exeter Chiefs fought their way to a bonus point victory over Newcastle Falcons to move up to second in Aviva…

Match Report: Saracens 29 Sale Sharks 18

Saracens recorded their first Aviva Premiership Rugby win since New Year’s Day with a 29-18 success over an in-form Sale…

Match Reaction: Harlequins 18 Leicester Tigers 27

Assistant coach Geordan Murphy tipped his cap to a steely second-half showing from the Leicester Tigers replacements, who changed the…

England Under-20 secure impressive bonus-point win over Italy

England secured their third bonus-point win of the 2017 Six Nations with an eight-try 46-0 victory over Italy at the…

Match Report: Harlequins 18 Leicester Tigers 27

Leicester Tigers’ impressive second-half comeback saw them score 24 unanswered points and stun hosts Harlequins at Twickenham Stoop to claim…

Myler still dreaming of top four with Northampton Saints

He has been the cornerstone of Northampton’s back-line for more than a decade and fly-half Stephen Myler insists he will…

Stephen Myler

Joseph returns for derby clash against Bristol Rugby

Jonathan Joseph will return to the Bath Rugby starting line-up for the Aviva Premiership clash with West Country rivals Bristol…

Chiefs side to face Newcastle Falcons

Rob Baxter may be wary of the threat Newcastle Falcons pose to his Exeter side, but insists its challenges such…

Waldrom

Wasps team to play Gloucester at the Ricoh Arena this Sunday

Director of Rugby Dai Young has named the Wasps’ side to take on Gloucester at the Ricoh Arena this Sunday,…

Le Roux Wasps