Cockerill bemoans porous defence
September 24, 2011
Leicester's Mathew Tait charges at the Saracens defence during Saturday's game at Welford Road © Getty Images
Leicester Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill admitted that his side had been ruthlessly punished for failing to make their tackles during Saturday's humiliating 50-25 reversal at home to Saracens.
The Tigers conceded six tries in total, with Ernst Joubert helping himself to a brace and Charlie Hodgson, Owen Farrell, Jamie George and Brad Barritt all notching one apiece.
"There's no getting away with it, you've got to make your tackles. It hurts you," Cockerill said. "The second try they scored (by Joubert) and the ones just after half-time (by Farrell and George); you've got to make your tackles. If you don't then you get punished and they get away from you."
Leicester, beaten by Saracens in last year's play-off final, have now lost three of their first four games of the new season. Their cause has not been aided by the unavailibity of 12 of their international contingent because of the World Cup but with the tournament's pool stages now drawing to an end Cockerill is eagerly awaiting the return of some of his key men, including Thomas Waldrom, who was drafted into the England squad to provide cover for injury doubt Nick Easter.
"I'll be asking them to make a decision in the morning on whether he's going to be flying back tomorrow or not," added Cockerill. "We go to Bath next week and then we have Harlequins here, and then we might get the odd one back."
Meanwhile, Saracens director of rugby Mark McCall was a happy man after seeing his side inflict a worst ever Premiership defeat upon Leicester.
"I think our fundamentals were really strong today; and the line-out was outstanding. Then we just got a bit of momentum in attack," the former Ulster boss said.
"If you look at our away record last year it was very good. We won nine of our Premiership games away from home, so we don't pick and choose when we get up for games. The players try to get up for every game.
"(But) This kind of ground and this kind of stadium excites the players. A big part of that is the crowd and the players enjoy that.
"We had a lot of younger players on the field today - Jamie George, Will Fraser, Jackson Wray, Ben Spencer, Owen Farrell, James Short - and it's great experience for them, and I thought they did really well."
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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