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Opponents in Focus - Leicester Tigers

27th October 2006

Leicester Tigers began their 2006/7 Heineken Cup campaign with an agonising 21-19 defeat at the hands of European champions Munster a week ago today.

Pat Howard's side came back from a nine-point half time deficit to lead 19-18 with five minutes to play, before Ronan O'Gara’s 51 metre penalty broke Tigers hearts.

Tigers went into that match on the back four successive victories, beginning with a first away triumph of the season at NEC Harlequins in late September. They followed that success with two wins on the bounce in the newly-named EDF Energy Cup, scoring 10 tries in the process and booking their place in the semi-finals with a game to spare. Next came a hardfought victory over East Midlands rivals Northampton Saints in the Guinness Premiership at Franklin’s Gardens.

Unfortunately for the Leicester faithful, that winning run came to an end in disappointing fashion at Welford Road last Sunday to leave Tigers in third position after the opening round of pool 4 matches.

As a club, Leicester Tigers have mixed memories of Cardiff’s
Millennium Stadium, having lost out to London Wasps in last season’s Anglo-Welsh cup four years after recording one of their greatest ever victories. In May 2002, over 70,000 supporters saw Tigers claim their second European title
courtesy of a 15-9 victory over Munster. That victory ensured Tigers became the first club in the tournament’s history to win back-toback Heineken Cups.

Tigers captain Martin Corry is in line to make his 51st Heineken Cup appearance this afternoon, having started 48 times and come off the bench twice during his nine years with
the club. Last weekend Corry joined Martin Johnson, Graham Rowntree and Austin Healey as the fourth Leicester
player to reach this landmark since English sides entered the competition in 1997/98.