Tuesday, December 09, 2008
The Leicester Tigers achieved a bonus-point win over Perpignan on the weekend at Welford Road in the Heineken Cup. Toby Flood scored 23 points and the first of four tries for Leicester as they maintained their unbeaten record.
Aaron Mauger profited from a scything run from Dan Hipkiss but Perpignan kept themselves in touch with a breakaway try from centre Maxime Mermoz and an opportunist effort from flanker Ovidiu Tonita.
The Tigers scrum had been in destructive mood all night and Perpignans resistance was broken when Leicester drove them 10 yards back over their own line for Jordan Crane to touch down.
Matt Smith sealed the bonus point with a jinking break down the touchline and, although the Catalans engineered a late penalty try, Leicesters scrum had done the damage.
That pack was phenomenal. They have so much talent and so much want and desire to be successful, said Flood.
Julian has done everything you possibly can do as a player and yet there he is at the forefront of our pack and pushing them over from 10 metres.
Playing behind that pack, and the atmosphere and drive it gives the team, is unbelievable.
And then you have Lewis Moody who just runs around like it is his last game and without a care in the world. You would never believe he has kids and a family!
It is fantastic to be back, he said. The one pleasure of playing for England is that you are representing your country, but when you come back to the club you step out of the limelight and you can get back to what you were doing before you went off with England. You almost slot straight back in.
You have to have confidence if you play 10 or 12 because you need to control the game. My confidence was never really affected by what happened last week.
Flood finished second best to Dan Carter at Twickenham and is set to lock horns with the All Blacks fly-half in next weekends return tie against Perpignan in France.
Carter, who has signed until the end of the season on a deal reported to be worth 30,000 a game, was absent after spending most of the week on promotional duties in Italy.
Flood added: He is a world-class player but you cant play the player, you have to play the team. You cant let it affect you. One player will make a big difference but you can still find holes in them.