Cockerill insists Leicester Tigers struggled

Leicester head coach Cockerill sent out a warning for group rivals ASM Clermont Auvergne and the Ospeys that Viadana are tough to beat – despite his side scoring seven tries on Saturday.


Full-back Scott Hamilton grabbed a hat-trick to add to further scores from Johne Murphy, Tom Croft, Lucas Amorosino and a penalty try as the Tigers picked up maximum points in the Pool Three clash.


But Leicester head coach Cockerill insisted the Italians were up to scratch. He said: “Viadana have good players, are doing well in the Italian league and have a good set piece and kicking game. They are a very strong team.


“They made the game really hard for us and we must give them huge credit for that. Any side who comes here and thinks they can just turn up will come unstuck. It was a hard, physical battle for us.


“It was frustrating and disjointed at times but we took our tries really well. We have found from experience in Italy that you have to be patient, go through the phases and take your opportunities.” he told ERC Rugby.


“We didn’t want to chase the game too early because that is when you make mistakes.


“But seven tries is probably a decent return in the end. We’ve scored 11 tries in the last two weeks and that’s a good return in the first two rounds.”


Leicester got back on track with a much-needed victory at the Stadio Luigi Zafanella following their 32-32 thrilling draw with the Ospreys last weekend.


Murphy opened the scoring after ten minutes but Leicester were rocked on their heels when Kaine Robertson touched down for the hosts to level the scores.


But the visitors got back on track thanks to the inspired form of Hamilton who scored in either half to finally kill off their hard-working hosts.


Hamilton said: “We have probably played better than what we have shown here.


“But we came here for five points and that’s what we have got – we’re pleased with our work.


“Viadana were really good and I was impressed by their forwards. They carried the ball well and their big boys took a lot of stopping.


“Some of their backs put us under pressure but we managed to hold onto the ball for long enough and score the tries when we needed to.”

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