Martin Crowson's top five Leicester Tigers games of 2012
Here are my top five Leicester Tigers games of 2012.
Date: Sunday, Feb 19, 2012
A dog-awful game for the purist but a crucial win for Leicester against a Saracens team that had not been beaten on home soil for 16 months.
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Tigers put together 26 phases, deep into injury-time to win it. Geordan Murphy slotted the ugliest drop-goal he will ever make, which crept inches over the bar.
Date: Sunday March 18, 2012
Game: LV= Cup final
Any win over local rivals is sweet but when it is done in the final of a competition it makes it even sweeter.
After Rob Hawkins' arm had been callously broken by Calum Clark early on, Tigers dominated most of the game and scored some cracking tries.
Saints threw everything they had at the Leicester line late on, but were too far behind to change the outcome.
Date: Saturday, April 14
Poor old Saints. This was their third defeat in just four months by the old enemy and for Leicester to pick up a bonus-point win, and a first victory at Franklin's Gardens since 2006, must have made it even harder to take.
Tigers led 17-9 at the break and, by the time they had extended that lead to 27-9 in the second half, the travelling fans in the crowd could barely believe what they were seeing.
Date: Saturday, April 21
The game of the season between the two sides who would eventually battle it out at Twickenham a month later for the Premiership crown.
Quins flew out of the blocks and led 26-13 just before half-time.
But Tigers played some of their most attractive and expansive rugby of the season to wrap up another bonus-point victory over opposition near the top of the table.
Date: Sunday Oct 21, 2012
Game: Heineken Cup
Tigers went 10-0 down against the Welsh region in a home game they simply had to win to be serious contenders in this season's European competition.
But three tries in the final ten minutes turned the scoreline on its head and, amid a thrilling finale which had Welford Road rocking to its very foundations, Manu Tuilagi's last-minute score earned Tigers a bonus-point win.