Leicester dig deep to claim LV=Cup at Saints’ expense

LEICESTER (26) vs NORTHAMPTON (14)

NORTHAMPTON director of rugby Jim Mallinder refused to blame fly-half Stephen Myler after his errant pass gifted Leicester the decisive try and the season’s first silverware in the shape of the LV=Cup.

The Saints trailed by 10 points with just over half an hour remaining but any hopes of staging a comeback were doused when Myler, who had kicked all of his side’s points up to that stage, saw an overly ambitious pass intercepted by Scott Hamilton and the Kiwi wing ran the length of the pitch to score.

“Sometimes that happens [Myler’s misplaced pass that led to Hamilton’s try]. I think he saw someone coming out of the line and tried to get the pass over him,” said Mallinder.

“It just didn’t happen for him. It’s just unfortunate – I don’t blame him for trying it.

“On our day we could easily have won that game, but it wasn’t our day. If we had looked after the ball a bit better in the first half, we wouldn’t have gone in seven points down.”

Despite the comfortable margin of victory, Leicester were forced to survive a second half onslaught and although they conceded a late try to Christian Day, Leicester’s director of rugby Richard Cockerill marveled at his side’s spirited rearguard effort.

“There was some good grit and determination out there – we were under the cosh for the whole of the second half virtually but the attitude of the players has been outstanding,” he said. “We were a bit fortunate with the interception taking us out of sight but I thought we were good for the win.”