Crane lifts Tigers spirit
Jordan is providing Loffreda with a selection headache
By Joe Drabble. Last Updated: 11/12/07 1:58pm
Crane: Promising future ahead
Leicester Tigers emerging star Jordan Crane has been drawing the plaudits after another impressive display for the Tigers against Toulouse on Saturday.
The 21-year-old back-row forward is making such an impression on the Tigers side that head coach Marcelo Loffreda is finding it difficult to leave him out of the starting line-up.
At 6ft 3in, 17st 2lb, Crane has made such an impact at No.8 that Leicester can afford the luxury of playing Martin Corry as a flanker.
Tigers lined up on Saturday with 10 internationals in the starting 15, and four more on the bench - yet it was Crane who walked off with the man-of-the-match award as Tigers beat Toulouse 14-9 in the Heineken Cup.
Crane has emphasised the importance of the Heineken Cup to the club, especially after the Tigers early set-back in the competition this season.
"In Europe, every game for us is a cup final after we lost the first game in Leinster, and to get out of this very tough group we still have to win every game," Crane told the Leicester Mercury.
Crane is showing a maturity far beyond his years - and he is keen to cement a regular place in the Leicester starting line-up.
"There is a lot of competition in the squad and there always has been, but everyone can do a job," said Crane.
"It's pleasing for us as young boys, the next generation coming through and taking it to the likes of Toulouse.
"They came out attacking and we were blowing. But the defence was strong and we had a game-plan to play in their half."
Pool Six is still wide open and Leicester know they can't afford to come away from Toulouse empty handed this weekend.
"We've just got to go there and do a job," said Crane. "We must pick up as many points as we can. We're going there to try to win."