Impressive Leicester thump Exeter
March 23, 2014
Seeing yellow ... Owen Williams is high tackled by Dean Mumm
© Getty Images
Leicester consolidated fourth place in the Aviva Premiership with a six-try thumping of Exeter at Welford Road on Sunday.
The champions produced one of their best performances for some time to demolish the newly crowned LV=Cup winners 45-15 with three tries in each half. Fit-again England centre Manu Tuilagi scored on his first home appearance since September with the other tries coming from Logovi'i Mulipola, Vereniki Goneva, Adam Thompstone and David Mele (two), with Owen Williams kicking 13 points. Exeter, who had captain Dean Mumm sin-binned in the first half, replied with tries from Jack Yeandle and Ian Whitten, with Henry Slade kicking five points.
Scrum-half Ben Youngs made his 100th start for the Tigers and, in the process, he and his dad Nick became only the second father and son to achieve the feat, after Ian and Matt Smith. Jack Nowell returned for Exeter after the Six Nations while Yeandle replaced injured hooker Chris Whitehead.
Exeter weathered an early storm from Leicester and took the lead in the seventh minute with a penalty from fly-half Slade. But then Tuilagi showed just how much Leicester had missed him by scoring his side's first try and causing huge problems for the Chiefs' defence. The try, in the ninth minute, came after Tuilagi evaded a tackle and burst down the left and, from a ruck, Anthony Allen put his fellow centre over. Williams' conversion was adjudged by the touch judges to have missed but TV replays showed they had got it wrong.
Leicester stretched their lead to 12-3 in the 13th minute when huge prop Mulipola ran straight over Nowell to score after a break by winger Goneva. Williams added the conversion. Williams then booted a penalty but Exeter hit back with a try by Yeandle form a lineout and drive, which Slade converted from the left touchline.
Leicester restored their 12-point advantage two minutes later when Goneva split the Exeter defence before dummying three defenders to score near the posts with Williams adding the extras.
Mumm was sin-binned in the 33rd minute for a high tackle on Williams after the referee had viewed the new TV screen at the clubhouse end and minutes later Williams slotted an easy penalty to make it 25-10. Exeter just managed to clear after making a mess of a lineout on their own line at the start of the second half but, after conceding a penalty when their scrum was marched backwards, Williams made it 28-10. Thompstone earned Leicester a bonus point with their fourth try after a flowing move through the backs but Williams missed the touchline conversion.
Leicester brought on former England fly-half Toby Flood, who is joining Toulouse next season, on the hour and his missed tackle allowed centre Whitten to turn defence into attack with a scything 40 metre run to the Leicester 22.
The Chiefs failed to take advantage of a period of pressure and Leicester charged up the other end and, from a scrum on the Exeter line, replacement scrum-half Mele scored with virtually his first touch. Flood converted from the left touchline to make it 40-10. A minute later Whitten scored Exeter's second try in the left corner, but Slade missed the conversion.
The Tigers nearly scored a sixth with four minutes left after great work by replacement Graham Kitchener and Goneva but it was Mele who got his second with less than two minutes left.
Logovi'i Mulipola breaks away to scores a Leicester's second try © Getty Images
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd
Communication error please reload the page.
After another disastrous night out, the Reds fell to a one-point loss to the Lions, but Reds coach Richard Graham still believes the Reds have a chance to make the finals
England manager Roy Hodgson confirmed that Arsenal striker Danny Welbeck will miss Tuesday's international friendly against Italy with injury, while Liverpool winger Raheem Sterling will also be excused from the game in Turin
Andy Murray made a solid start in his quest for a third Miami Open title as he dispatched Donald Young to reach the third round in Florida
Harry Kane declared his debut international goal as the greatest moment of his career as he scored just 80 seconds after coming off the bench during England's 4-0 victory against Lithuania
Northampton star George North was knocked unconscious after scoring two tries during the Saints' 52-30 Aviva Premiership victory over London Wasps on Friday
Who has driven in the most GPs before taking pole position?
Mudslinging and an agreement on something that will never happen, it's all in a day's work for a Formula One boss, as Maurice Hamilton explains...
Fallout continues from the NSW-Brumbies derby, with one Tahs forward - not Potgieter - surprised by other unsavoury comments during the game, Greg Growden reports
Greg Growden previews Super Rugby round 7. We've also got key stats, team news and all the line-ups to inform your ESPN Footytips Super Rugby picks
Will Mercedes dominate again? Can anybody catch up with the help of a rainstorm? And will the Red Bull/Renault relationship tear itself apart? All those questions and more will be answered at this weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix