Harlequins will be out to prove a point, says Leicester Tigers No.8 Jordan Crane
Leicester Tigers can expect Harlequins to come out firing on Saturday after their shock defeat by Wasps last week.
That is the view of Tigers No.8 Jordan Crane ahead of his side's trip to the defending Premiership champions, who lost top spot to Leicester as a result of losing 17-16 to their neighbours.
"Harlequins will be looking for a response from their players," said Crane. "They wouldn't have expected to lose that game to Wasps last week. They were missing a few players but still have a good core, with the likes of Nick Evans and Nick Easter.
"We have a good record going there and will be up for it. We know the importance of the game and what it can mean this season."
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Tigers have an excellent record at the Stoop. Incredibly, they have won on their last eight trips there since Quins won 26-23 in May 2003.
Not that Tigers will be reading any great significance into that record. Top of the agenda will be their own level of performance as they look to extend a winning sequence of five matches in the Premiership.
That run has helped to take them to the top of the table for the first time since May 2011.
They did not get into top gear last week against London Welsh at Welford Road, but a 28-12 win was still a welcome outcome for the Tigers camp, particularly as both Quins and Saracens slipped up.
"We were happy to get four points against London Welsh last week and all the other results went our way," said Crane, who believes there is considerably more to come from Tigers during the next few of months.
"We are still a little bit off our best," he said. "Conditions are determining the way the game is played at the moment.
"It is difficult to play free-flowing rugby at a fast pace on a bog. So it is difficult to say where we are.
"The conditions and slow pitches are a leveller. The main thing is that we come out of these encounters winning.
"When the grounds firm up and get a bit quicker, we will be hitting our straps at the right time."