Leicester Tigers pull off high risk tactic that could be a game changer
It was so strange that it simply looked illegal, but Leicester Tigers scored a very peculiar try against Bath at Welford Road on Saturday.
Already leading 41-20 against their rivals at home, Leicester’s Charlie Atkinson received the ball in the back field from a kick. He shaped up to return the ball back into Bath’s half, but winger Matt Gallagher was able to charge down the kick.
Unfortunately for Gallagher, he was not able to charge down the ball enough. The winger was only able to get a hand on the ball, but unable to change its direction. What that meant was every Leicester player was suddenly onside despite all of them being in front of Atkinson.
What made it worse for Bath was where the ball landed- straight into the hands of Tigers centre Matt Scott on the half way line. Out of nowhere the Scotland international suddenly only had one man to beat, with plenty of support as well. Scott passed to Mike Brown, who in turn shipped the ball to George Martin, who went over for the try.
Seeing as this could have easily resulted in a try for Bath had the charge down been slightly more successful, this is not something that was planned or will be seen too often on a rugby pitch. But if a player could ever master ricocheting the ball off a defender to put all players onside, it would change rugby as we know it.
“I’m pleased with all the players, not just the guys on the England fringes, but we’re definitely going to give the old boss some headaches,” the Tigers interim head coach Richard Wigglesworth said after the 48-27 win.
“The end of the game was a lot easier on the heart than the last two. We were really good in parts. We knocked off for 30 minutes which really annoyed me, because to concede four tries at home is not good enough.
“I’ve told the players how happy I am with the first 40 minutes and a lot of stuff we did, then we got back to putting them under pressure at the end but they were very unlucky with injuries at that point.”