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    Leicester V Newcastle



    Leicester Irish team for Saturday


    Tigers vs Newcastle


    15. Johne Murphy
    14. Leon Lloyd
    13. Seru Rabeni
    12. Sam Vesty
    11. Tom Varndell
    10. Paul Burke
    9. Frank Murphy


    1. Marcos Ayerza
    2. James Buckland
    3. Michael Holford
    4. Ben Kay
    5. James Hamilton
    6. Brett Deacon
    7. Shane Jennings
    8. Jordan Crane


    Replacements


    16. George Chuter
    17. Martin Castrogiovanni
    18. Tom Croft
    19. Martin Corry
    20. Harry Ellis
    21. Ian Humphreys
    22. Alesana Tuilagi


    Maybe the IRFU should throw Tigers a few bob for developing some Irish players[img]smileys/razz.gif[/img], possibly the next Irish fly half
    <H1>Planet Rugby</H1>


    compiled by John O'Sullivan



    Tigers cherish Irish cubs


    Given Leicester's victory over Munster at Thomond Park on Saturday and the influence of the English club's Irish-born players in that win it's apposite to revisit a few words spoken by Tigers coach Pat Howard when this column caught up with him in Leicester last week.


    He was very complimentary about his Irish charges and singled out several for special mention. "You spoke about Shane Jennings. It's a real pity he's going back. He's been fantastic. We'd welcome him back with open arms because his work ethic has been outstanding.


    "He came in with the right ethos, he's worked hard and made a great impression as a consequence and he's been picked more often than not. I hope that he gets everything out of playing in Leinster that he needs to."


    Regarding Frank Murphy, Howard enthused: "I've started picking him ahead of Scott Bemand. Frank's got different qualities. His pass is very good. He's very much an example of the classy Munster halves that are going round at the moment, (Peter) Stringer, (Eoin) Reddan at Wasps and (Mike) Prendergast in Bourgoin.


    "Munster are exporting some very good half-backs. He's done a great job. I think he's settled in very well kept his head down and worked hard.


    "We're really impressed with him.


    "We are more than happy to help out these players. John Murphy also played against Munster (in the first game). He was fairly well an unknown. Those two guys have done well here. Ian Humphreys; I played with with in a Steele Bodger game a few years ago and made the decision to bring him across because he had some talent. It has taken a little while to come about. He's not bad.


    "We are a bit of a nursery for Irish rugby in many regards. We don't necessarily go and buy the biggest names. We've got some young guys and they have performed well for us.


    "The Irish kids have very high skill levels, maybe due to your schools system which is strong. I played with Wanderers years ago and I appreciate there is a big emphasis on the schools system. The kids that come through are skilful. Frank Murphy, John Murphy, Ian Humphreys are skilful blokes.


    "Physically they are not as big as some of our other players but in terms of skill level, very good."
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