Ellis Genge appointed skipper as Leicester revamp leadership group
Recent England summer series vice-captain Ellie Genge has been appointed Leicester skipper for the upcoming 2021/22 season after Tiger boss Steve Borthwick decided to revamp his squad’s leadership group following last season’s improved sixth-place finish.
Ex-England assistant Borthwick took charge at Welford Road in July 2020 and he has now opted to make some changes after a campaign that also featured an appearance in the May final of the European Challenge Cup at Twickenham.
“Ellis epitomises what we, Leicester Tigers, are about – hard work, toughness and a desire to continue to improve,” enthused Borthwick, who is continuing pre-season preparations with this week’s squad visit to Jersey.
“He has set the example in everything that he does on and off the pitch since I arrived at Tigers and possesses a great ability to bring people together. It gave me great pleasure to appoint Ellis as club captain but even more pleasure to see the reaction from his teammates to the news of his appointment.”
The 26-year-old Genge, who has been at Leicester since 2016, will have fellow 26-year-old Hanro Liebenberg as his vice-captain. The South African arrived at the club for the 2019/20 season and was voted the supporters’ player of the year at the end of last season.
See what @FreddieBurns had to say when he spoke to ???? on the pitch during the squad's Pre-Season Camp in Jersey.
— Leicester Tigers (@LeicesterTigers) August 26, 2021
“Everyone can see the quality that Hanro brings as a player in each and every game we play. Every day he brings that quality to our training, setting the standard for others to follow. He thinks deeply about the game and his experience of playing in South Africa, France and England adds to the great depth of understanding he brings,” explained Borthwick.
“Ellis and Hanro together are a great combination to lead this Leicester Tigers playing group. We are also fortunate to have a strong group of senior players at Leicester Tigers who will be a great support to Ellis and Hanro in what they bring to the leadership roles.”
The promotion of Genge means he takes over as club captain from the long-serving Tom Youngs. He first led the club in the 2014/15 season but finished last season on a bum note after getting an RFU reprimand. “Tom Youngs has been an exceptional leader for Leicester Tigers for several seasons and while not as captain, he will continue to be a senior player in our group,” continued Borthwick.
“His time as club captain has been during one of the toughest periods in the club’s history and Tom has been integral to building the foundations to help turn Tigers around, which he is committed to being a part of in a different way this season.
“He is as passionate a clubman as I have come across and, in every way, thinks of the team and his teammates before himself, including his decision to stand down from the role ahead of this season. Tom is owed a great amount of praise for having done the job of club captain at Leicester Tigers to the level he has and in the manner he has since 2015.”
"I never once felt threatened or intimidated by his actions." Youngs will face an unusual punishment for his momentary lapse with referee Ian Tempest. https://t.co/WToITBSMDW
— RugbyPass (@RugbyPass) June 21, 2021
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