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How 'avoiding the tyranny of results' has helped Leicester to the Premiership summit

By Paul Smith
Leicester scored seven tries against Northampton on Saturday (PA)

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Despite quickly disowning the soundbite, Leicester boss Steve Borthwick says avoiding “the tyranny of results” has been an important part of his club’s table-topping form.

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Put another way, this means concentrating on performance and letting the rest take care of itself, which, with seven wins from seven and 32 points from a possible 35, is an approach which certainly seems to suit the Tigers.

“When we were struggling we were clear on what we needed to improve upon and we’ve worked exceptionally hard on those things,” he said.

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“Results have gone our way this year, but we are doing the same things trying to get better as a rugby team, improve the players and get better as coaches.

“I am often asked about plans and targets but I don’t measure things like that – I just look at what we’ve learned from the last game and how we get better for next week.

“Every Monday morning we stand up and talk about what we did well and what we’ve got to do better, not whether we’ve won or lost the game, and that’s what we’ll continue to do.”

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This week’s work-ons will focus on defence and discipline it seems, despite the Tigers racking up an impressive seven tries while putting 55 points on traditional rivals Northampton in their latest Franklin’s Gardens outing.

“There’s plenty of things we still need to improve,” Borthwick said. “We conceded four tries at the weekend which is very disappointing.

“Northampton pulled us around and we gave away two yellow cards which is unacceptable and that gave them an opportunity (to get) into the game.

“We have addressed that with the team this morning and are aiming to be better this week.”

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Leicester will be without three hookers – Tom Youngs, Nic Dolly and Julian Montoya – when they host Bath on Friday night.

However, Borthwick has as little time for excuses as he does for sympathy for the bottom-of-the-table plight of Friday’s opponents who he captained with great distinction while making nearly 250 appearances in blue, black and white between 1998 and 2008.

“I’m not going to stand here and talk about the players we don’t have available – we will adapt accordingly,” he said.

“Bath have plenty of top players and have made some significant investment in facilities and personnel in recent times.

“Sometimes you’re on the right side of results and sometimes you’re on the wrong end of things and I try not to dwell on it.”

 

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