Leicester Tigers' Jordan Crane ready to face Toulouse's powerful back row
Leicester Tigers will be up against "one of the best back rows in the world" when French giants Toulouse arrive for their Heineken Cup showdown at Welford Road on Sunday.
That is the view of No.8 Jordan Crane, who could be tasked with stopping the pace and power of three men who have more than 100 international caps between them.
Thierry Dusautoir, Yannick Nyanga and Louis Picamoles have made a name for themselves as one of the toughest back rows in rugby.
Crane knows the four-times Heineken Cup champions will take some stopping after the 23-9 defeat in France in October.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Wednesday, May 22 2013
"We were disappointed with the way that their back row stamped their dominance on the game in wet conditions over in Toulouse in round one," he said.
"We definitely have a point to prove this Sunday.
"Their back row is probably one of the best in the world with Picamoles, Dusautoir and Nyanga.
"It's a massive challenge for us but we are up for it and have the players to compete with them.
"When kick off arrives, we will be well up for it. It's a massive game."
Crane is the man in possession of the No.8 shirt ahead of Sunday's meeting after making his 11th start of the season in the 15-15 draw with the Ospreys last Sunday.
While the late nature of Jon Spratt's equalising try at the Liberty Stadium left Crane and his team-mates disappointed, the 26-year-old insisted Leicester would have taken Sunday's winner-takes-all scenario at the start of the campaign.
"When we scored that second try to go 15-10 ahead, I thought we would just close the game out but a draw was a fair result," he said.
"We would have still had to beat Toulouse at home even if we had won.
"If you would have put us in a position where we had to beat Toulouse in the final group game to go through to the quarter-finals at the start of the competition, we would have taken it.
"And even if we had beaten the Ospreys and then beaten Toulouse, we still might not have got a home semi-final because lots of teams have got lots of points.
"Let's just get into the quarter-finals and then, as has been shown before with knock-out rugby, it is anyone's game."
Toulouse have suffered a big injury blow ahead of Sunday's crunch game with the news that teenage centre sensation Gael Fickou has been ruled for a month after suffering an ankle injury.
The 18-year-old picked up a knock with just six minutes left of the French side's 35-14 win over Treviso last weekend.