England Tigers to be rested
By Ben Blackmore. Last Updated: February 14, 2007 8:34am
Leicester Tigers have followed Newcastle's lead by revealing their England stars are highly unlikely to feature in this weekend's Premiership clash at Worcester.
The Falcons confirmed on Tuesday that Jonny Wilkinson will play no part at Bristol this weekend, after elite director Rob Andrew called for the widespread resting of England's stars.
Now Leicester have confirmed Martin Corry, Louis Deacon and George Chuter are all unlikely to feature at Sixways, although coach Richard Cockerill slammed Andrew for making the request.
"We don't over-play our players and I don't think any other clubs do. The welfare of our players comes first," stated former England international Cockerill.
"You only have to look back to the autumn when Julian White was played four games on the trot (by England) and we had to rest him for three weeks after that.
"We had the player's interests first. England played him to near exhaustion.
"It is not just England players we look after, we look after all our international players across the board.
"We probably won't play our Italian forward Martin Castrogiovanni and we probably won't play our Irish back Geordan Murphy either.
"Our strategy is that we know we will lose these players for periods of time and we have built a strength of squad to deal with that. Other clubs may not have that luxury.
"But from a Leicester point of view we want to look after our best players because we have big games coming up after the Six Nations and we want them to be as fresh as possible."
Cockerill admits White is the only selected member who is in line for an appearance against Worcester, after spending the last two Six Nations matches on the bench.
England boss Brian Ashton has named the robust prop amongst the replacements once again, in a matchday 22 that features Joe Worsley and Olly Morgan as the only two alterations.