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Leicester Tigers and Cardiff Blues face a vital European Rugby Challenge Cup Pool 5 encounter at Welford Road on Sunday.
Leicester lead the pool on 18 points, having won all four of their games, but Cardiff are only five points behind and Pau are just three points further adrift on 10.
- Leicester are undefeated in European competition against Cardiff, winning all four games, although their 2009 European Cup semi-final success came via a penalty shoot-out.
- Leicester have never lost a home game against Welsh opposition in European tournaments in 14 matches.
- Leicester’s Jonah Holmes and Cardiff’s Owen Lane are the leading try-scorers in this season’s Challenge Cup with four apiece.
- Cardiff duo Matthew Morgan (304) and Rey Lee-Lo (248) have made the most metres in the competition this term.
"You can probably read too much into what other teams can do and the permutations heading into these games. The basic for us is that if we win both games then we’ll qualify."
— Cardiff Blues (@cardiff_blues) January 8, 2020
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Leicester Tigers made it five wins from five in Pool 5 of the European Rugby Challenge Cup as they secured a 30-20 success in a thrilling contest with Cardiff Blues at Welford Road.
Cardiff gave an excellent account of themselves and led 14-10 at the break but must now win their final pool game next week to stand any chance of keeping their quarter-final hopes alive.
The Blues were fastest out of the blocks with Josh Adams finishing off a fine handling move to score wideout for Jason Tovey to land the first of his four successful kicks.
WHAT A START! pic.twitter.com/2LZK2YkB93
— Cardiff Blues (@cardiff_blues) January 12, 2020
But Leicester came roaring back with Sam Lewis charging through after great work from pack colleague Harry Wells.
Ben Thomas made sure of a half-time advantage for the visitors after more crisp approach work but their lead was short lived on the restart as the Tigers struck in devastating fashion.
Livewire Jordan Olowofela was the man to strike as his blistering pace finished off another stunning raid before fellow winger Rory Hughes pulled off a brilliant tackle to deny an almost instant response from Cardiff full-back Matthew Morgan who seemed a certain scorer.
5⃣ FROM 5⃣ in Europe.
— Leicester Tigers (@LeicesterTigers) January 12, 2020
The Tigers effectively wrapped up the victory when scrum half Ben White rounded off another classy raid involving Olowofela and George Ford.
Man of the match Ford made sure there was no way back for the Blues by taking his personal tally to 15 points which included two well-struck drop goals.
In their final Pool 5 matches next Saturday, Leicester travel to face Pau while Cardiff will look for the win at home to Rugby Calvisano which could still see them qualify for the next stage.