Tigers before Lions for Youngs

Wed, 22 May 2013 17:55
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Tom Youngs insists none of Leicester Tigers' B&I Lions contingent are thinking about anything other then yet another Premiership triumph.

Tom Youngs insists none of Leicester Tigers' British and Irish Lions contingent are thinking about anything other then yet another Premiership triumph.

Leicester and Premiership Finals go hand in hand, with this weekend's clash with Northampton Saints their ninth successive Final - although surprisingly they have only won three of the last eight.

In fact the most successful club side in English rugby have not won the title since 2010, but will arrive at Twickenham as favourites having done the double over their east Midlands rivals already this season.

Included in the Tigers squad for the match will be six of this year's Lions touring party, including Youngs, who has gone from strength to strength since former Leicester coach Heyneke Meyer switched his position from centre to hooker.

And while Northampton may be hoping the future Lions have one eye on Australia, Youngs is adamant that will not be the case when they step out at Twickenham this weekend.

"It's not difficult to stay focused on Tigers, not for me personally, I feel like the only reason I'm going on the Lions tour is because of my club," said Youngs, who was voted Premiership Player of the Year earlier this month.

"They get me to play for my country, so I play for my country, I do well there then selected on the Lions tour so it's all about the Leicester Tigers at the moment.

"Not winning the title would take the gloss off my personal accolades. The reason I won Premiership Player of the Year is due to the coaches, the players I play with, the people who help me day in, day out.

"So the award is great but it's down to them as well so as a team you want to win a trophy.

"Winning the title would mean everything to me, and as a team to not let it slip away from us for a third time would mean everything."

Despite the favourites tag Youngs insists Leicester will not be taking anything for granted in front of a sell-out crowd at Twickenham on Saturday.

"A lot of players for Saints are international players so they'll have played in big games, they played a European Cup Final a couple of years ago," he added.

"I know they lost but they've played in big occasions, they know exactly how to do it.

"They played a big game last weekend against Saracens to win there so they'll know exactly how to prepare and what to expect.

"Form goes out the window, previous games go out the window, it's a Final, it's a one-off game, that's all you've got to focus on."

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Team P W D L Pts
Northampton Saints 22 16 1 5 76
Bath 22 16 0 6 75
Leicester Tigers 22 15 1 6 68
Saracens 22 14 1 7 68
Exeter Chiefs 22 14 0 8 68
Wasps 22 11 2 9 61
Sale Sharks 22 11 0 11 54
Harlequins 22 10 0 12 49
Gloucester 22 9 1 12 48
London Irish 22 7 1 14 40
Newcastle Falcons 22 5 1 16 34
London Welsh 22 0 0 22 1