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Green pastures: New contract for Morris as Leicester go top

The Tigers were missing captain Geordan Murphy but defeated Worcester to overtake Harlequins.

Niall Morris came off the bench in the win over Warriors.
Niall Morris came off the bench in the win over Warriors.
Image: David Jones/PA Wire.

FORMER LEINSTER WINGER Niall Morris has double reason to celebrate this weekend after Leicester Tigers, whom he signed a contract extension with, beat Worcester Warriors 19-14.

Tigers came back from 14-0 down to defeat Warriors at Sixways and, thanks to a penalty try and a score from Scott Hamilton, bounced back for the win that now sees them top the Aviva Premiership.

John Andress and Neil Best came off the bench for Warriors but were unable to prevent the visitors as they powered their way back into contention.

Morris, who has scored six tries for Tigers this season and ended 2012 by signing his extension, came on with just under 30 minutes to play and contributed to the comeback.

Leicester’s director of rugby Richard Cockerill told the BBC, “Niall has been a very important member of the squad here for the last two seasons.

“He is a good young player who is developing really well.”

Morris, who started off with Blackrock College and featured eight times for Leinster’s senior team, was delighted to put pen to paper on the new contract.

“I’ve had great support from the coaches and the players,” he said, “and I want to continue to play here and do my best for the club.”

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Geordan Murphy, who kicked a penalty in Leicester’s 17-12 win over Gloucester, was not in the squad for Friday’s game.

Struggling Sharks

Five Irish players are in Premiership action today with Shane Monahan’s Gloucester taking on Ian Humpheys’ London Irish at Kingsholm.

Ian Whitten and Gareth Steenson are in the starting line-up for Exeter Chiefs against Northampton Saints while club captain Tom Hayes takes a breather on the replacements bench.

On Sunday, Conor O’Shea’s Harlequins can retake their spot at the top of the table if they defeat London Welsh.

Tony Buckley plays his 17 game of the season for Sale Sharks, against Mark McCall’s third placed Saracens, but, unfortunately for the prop, most of his appearances have come in losing efforts.

France and Wales

Grenoble, with former Leinster and Ireland hooker Bernard Jackman on the coaching ticket, could overtake Montpellier today in the Top 14 if they can beat fourth placed Castres at home.

Jeremy Davidson’s Stade Aurillacois have beaten Dax and Beziers in recent weeks and are second in the French Div 2.

Robin Copeland partners Josh Navidi and Sam Warburton in the Cardiff back-row against Munster tonight.

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Patrick McCarry

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