Cole eyes clean sweep
Tigers prop keen to cement his place for club and country
Last Updated: 07/10/10 2:46pm
Cole: Club and country aim
Dan Cole says Leicester Tigers are aiming to win everything this season, after speaking of his pride at following in the footsteps of so many legendary forwards.
Young prop Cole admits to be nervous in following some of the very best England forwards in pulling on a Leicester shirt, but is now proud to have established himself as a Tiger.
The 23-year-old has now played 20 times for Leicester, including coming on as a replacement during their Premiership final victory over Saracens last season.
Also making great strides in the England set-up with seven caps and an impressive tour of Australia, Cole hopes to cement himself as a regular at both club and international level.
As for the Tigers, Cole says they plan to regain their Aviva Premiership crown but also challenge for Heineken Cup glory once again as well.
"We want to win every game we play," said Cole. "Long term we want to win the European cup, we want to win the Aviva Premiership and we want to win the Anglo-Welsh now as it's called. That's our attitude and that's what we're going to go for
"Our main rivals in the Premiership this year will be the same as last year. Saracens came on well, Northampton beat us and they'll be up there at the end of the year, Wasps can put a run of form together so there's several teams that are there and there abouts.
"Recruitment-wise Leeds have had the biggest recruitment with Steve Thompson and several internationals across their boards, which hopefully they'll want to push on with, but the top four from last year have just solidified what they've got and brought in a couple of players they hope will push them over the edge."
Cole's personal aims are to nail-down a starting spot at Leicester, and also cement his England place in Martin Johnson's side with the World Cup coming up next year.
"Personally I want to solidify a place with Leicester," he added. "Try and get into a Premiership final, European finals and everything else. And with internationals, I think if you play well for your club that will take care of itself, but it starts with playing well for your club."
Cole was a Leicester fan as a youngster, and is delighted to now be on the pitch where he used to watch his heroes play week in week out.
"I used to tag along as a 12/13-year-old and watch the Neil Backs, Martin Johnsons, Rowtrees, Cockerills and the forward pack that Leicester had and the dominance they had, with so many legends of the game.
"Playing for the first team for the first time was very nervous personally, but exciting at the same time, you look around at the players who have played for the club and you just don't want to let anyone down."
Dan Cole is Mizuno's UK Rugby Ambassador. Visit mizuno.co.uk to find out more about Mizuno's groundbreaking rugby footwear and equipment.