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Preview: Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers

Preview: Worcester Warriors v Leicester Tigers

Worcester Warriors second row Chris Jones believes his side can derail Leicester Tigers’ title pursuit live in front of the ESPN cameras when their Midlands rivals arrive at Sixways on Friday.

Jones and co entertain a Leicester side who have won their last five in all competitions, including a hard-fought 17-12 win against Gloucester Rugby last time out.

The Warriors meanwhile, slipped to an away defeat to Sale Sharks in their last outing but back on home soil they have been formidable and have lost just once all season.

In the reverse fixture, Warriors agonisingly missed out on a bonus point, going down 34-26 at Welford Road, while 32-year-old Jones also feels revenge is on the cards after his side were humbled by the Tigers at home last season.

“Leicester are a fantastic side and they’ve been one of the best for as long as I’ve been involved in rugby,” said Jones.

“They don’t let much slip away from home but we’ve shown what we can do in front of our own crowd and we want to beat them.

“If we look at our game with them last season, we really underperformed and they got a bonus-point victory. We’ll be looking to put that right.

“I think we’ve got a real point to prove because for a lot of the game at Welford Road, we were actually dominating and putting them under a lot of pressure.

“But they managed to get the win and that is the mark of a great side. They’ll be up there at the end of the season but would like to try and put a dent their title ambitions.”

Facing the Tigers is always no easy task and it’s been made all the more difficult with the return to the starting line-up of England and Lions flanker Tom Croft.

And Anthony Allen, who scored the decisive try against Gloucester, is relishing Croft’s return – although he’s expecting no easy ride at Sixways.

“It's great to see him back and it's great that he's going straight into the starting line-up and will be able to just do his own thing from the off,” said centre Allen.

“Everyone at the club is pleased to see him back in the side because he's such an important player for club and country. I'm sure he'll be fine getting straight back into it.

“Worcester have always been a difficult side to beat at home and so we know we’re going to have to be at the top of our game.

“If we give silly penalties away in our own half then we know Andy Goode will punish us so we have to be very careful, we know we’ll be in for a tight game.”

Referee: JP Doyle (53rd Premiership game)
Assistant Referees: Andrew Pearce, Peter Huckle. TMO: Trevor Fisher.

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