In Pat Howard’s first game in charge since renewing his contract, the Tigers produced a stuttering performance but did at least get their Guinness Premiership season back up and running again.
After a makeshift outfit lost out at Gloucester last weekend, the home side were badly in need of a boost, and it came in the shape of Martin Corry, Harry Ellis, Lewis Moody and friends.
One interested observer among the sell-out crowd of more than 16,000 was England head coach Andy Robinson, and he will have been delighted to see all his stars come through apparently unscathed ahead of next weekend’s Six Nations clash with Scotland.
Robinson saw the Tigers go behind to a penalty from Warriors fly-half Shane Drahm after five minutes, but it did not take them long to respond as Ollie Smith cut a superb line off fly-half Andy Goode to scorch in under the posts.
Goode converted to make it 7-3 to the home side before kicking two more penalties to one from Drahm to extend the lead to seven points.
But as the Warriors have shown all season, they are nothing if not dogged, and another Drahm penalty, followed by a neatly taken try by Dale Rasmussen – also converted by Drahm – put the Warriors into a surprise 16-13 lead.
Goode’s fourth successful kick of the night levelled proceedings just before halftime and whatever Howard said at half-time seemed to work, as the Tigers poured out the blocks in the second-half.
One barnstorming run by Alesana Tuilagi straight after the break led to Warriors wing Mark Tucker being sin-binned for killing the ball.
The home side immediately took advantage, working the ball to the winger from a scrum for Tuilagi to crash over in the corner.
Worcester continued to hang on and Drahm’s fourth kick of the night kept them within two points with half an hour left, before another monstrous effort from the fly-half put the visitors 22-21 in front.
But, roared on by their faithful supporters, Leicester forced their way back in front when Cornwell was bundled over the line with the help of his forwards.
Goode’s conversion made it 28-22 but the Warriors continued to fight and were desperately unlucky not to claim a further try in the dying moments.