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Cockerill laments away form

01 November 2010

  • Gloucester earn win over Leicester thanks to last-gasp Vainikolo try
  • Richard Cockerill says the Tigers need to improve away from home
Andy Hazell of Gloucester is tackled by Anthony Allen during the Aviva Premiership match between Gloucester and Leicester Tigers

Photo: Getty Images

Leicester rugby director Richard Cockerill said the Tigers' away form needed to improve following their 19-12 Aviva Premiership loss to Gloucester at Kingsholm on Saturday.

Nicky Robinson and Billy Twelvetrees each kicked four penalties before substitute Lesley Vainikolo scored 90 seconds from time to give Gloucester their fourth successive league win.

While Gloucester moved up to third place after stretching their unbeaten record at home to 16 games, Leicester are still looking for their first Premiership away victory since April.

"We should have played better, there are no excuses," said Cockerill. "It was a game we could have won and we should be better than that.

"Our away form needs to be better, but if you look at it I think we could have won at Wasps and we could have got another point out of it tonight.

"But we are in a good spot. We are not far enough away from the top five to be worried. The roundabout of fate will come back to us at some stage."

Massive effort

Last-minute match-winning try-scorer Lesley Vainikolo of Gloucester celebrates with team mate Akapusi Qera

Photo: Getty Images

Vainikolo appeared on the overlap in typically robust fashion to claim a try that required confirmation from the video referee.

The Cherry and Whites were therefore able to maintain impressive Premiership momentum ahead of a two-week break for the Anglo-Welsh LV=Cup.

Indeed, it was in that competition that they last tasted home defeat, Cardiff Blues toppling them on November 8 last year.

"It was a massive effort," Gloucester head coach Bryan Redpath said. "I said all week it would be a tough, close game, and that was tight.

"We've been criticised in the past for bottling games, having no nerve or steel, but we had to finish that game off and we did."

Redpath reserved particular praise for wing Charlie Sharples, who proved both a major attacking force and also made his share of important tackles.

"He's a tough lad," Redpath added. "His pace is outstanding, as is his defence and work in the contact area. He deserves a lot of credit."

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