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    Baby Humphries Article

    <h1>
    Tigers' cub Humphreys lies in wait










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    <h2>
    Leicester's Irish fly-half was thrilled to beat Munster and is hoping to turn heads back home
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    <h3>
    By Tim Glover, Rugby Union Correspondent
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    <h4>
    Published:01 April 2007
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    If Leicester fail to get into the shake-up for the Guinness Premiership
    climax, they could blame Ian Humphreys. They won't, and they won't, but
    it was a rum business all the same.







    The Tigers have been deducted one point for fielding an ineligible
    player during the autumn internationals. When Humphreys featured
    against London Irish on 18 November and against Wasps eight days later,
    he was registered as being on loan to Leeds and under the rules should
    not have been on the pitch.


    Leicester's punishment was light, for they won both games. In the
    match at Wasps they produced one of their best away victories of the
    season, and Humphreys was outstanding. "It was very important for my
    confidence," he said. "I thought maybe I am good enough for the
    Premiership, that I do deserve a chance. Had it gone badly I'd have
    probably thought I shouldn't be here."


    Humphreys regards the performance at Adams Park as being even more
    important to his development than the rite- of-passage epic in the
    Heineken Cup in January, when Leicester became the first club to beat
    Munster in Limerick in European competition. Humphreys played because
    Andy Goode was injured, and he was up against not only Ronan O'Gara but
    also the Thomond Park factor, which has reduced some fine English clubs
    to putty. On a foul night the Tigers pack took charge, and behind them
    the young stand-off again stepped up to the plate.


    "The atmosphere was electric and I like it like that," said
    Humphreys. "If it's quiet I'm more nervous. In the warm-up I imagined
    that the chant for Munster was for Ulster. The banter with the crowd
    helped to relax me. They were slagging me off, telling me to go back to
    Belfast. It's part and parcel of the game and I can take it. We were
    written off by everyone outside Leicester. Everybody was banging on
    about how Munster were invincible, but it never entered my mind we
    could possibly lose."


    The victory - Leicester dominated their group after losing at home
    to Munster - earned them a quarter-final at Welford Road, where today
    they play Stade Fran├žais, the aristocrats from Paris who have never won
    the Heineken, losing 34-30 to the Tigers in the final at Parc des
    Princes in 2001. On that May day Goode was at stand-off and Pat Howard
    at centre.


    Howard, now in his last season as Leicester's coach before returning
    to Australia, has Goode at No 10 this afternoon, with Humphreys on the
    bench. Last weekend, in the EDF Energy Cup semi-final against Sale,
    Paul Burke started a

    #2


    "In June he marries Jenny, a speech therapist, in Belfast before setting up home in Leicester."


    Perhaps Jenny can help the Ulster squad out with their elocution ? [img]smileys/wink.gif[/img]

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