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Page last updated at 16:32 GMT, Saturday, 20 September 2008 17:32 UK

Worcester 17-19 Leicester

Worcester (7) 17
Tries: Mullan, Talei Cons: Crichton 2 Pen: Crichton

Leicester (6) 19
Try: Dupuy Con: Dupuy Pens: Flood 4

Leicester scrum-half Julien Dupuy
Dupuy scores the match-winning try for Leicester at Sixways

Unheralded scrum-half Julien Dupuy was Leicester's unlikely hero as his side edged to a narrow win over Worcester to go top of the Premiership table.

Matt Mullan's try put Worcester 7-6 up at the break but Toby Flood's third penalty soon put Leicester ahead.

A superb Netani Talei try put Worcester back in front but Flood's kicks kept the Tigers in contention.

And Dupuy converted his own try with 12 minutes left to put Leicester back in front after a valiant Worcester effort.

Dupuy was pressed into kicking duty with Flood in the sin-bin, and the Frenchman held his nerve to ensure Leicester secured their third straight win under new coach Heyneke Meyer.

Flood's sixth-minute penalty opened the scoring, but the first try deservedly went to Worcester when Mullan sliced through weak Tigers defence.

Leicester just about kept Miles Benjamin out, and their resilience was rewarded when Flood cut the gap to one point during first-half injury-time despite his side being down to 14 men with Jordan Crane in the sin-bin.

It was a controversial score though, with sections of the crowd behind the posts vehemently disagreeing with the touch judges' decision to award the three points.

Flood's penalty put Leicester ahead again, but Worcester sent a record Sixways crowd delirious with a magnificent try from Talei as he scorched over from the halfway line.

Another Flood penalty kept Tigers in range, and a yellow card for Worcester flanker James Collins seemed to have given the visitors the edge.

But Chris Latham's splendid 80m run was halted just short of the try-line as Worcester attempted to go for the jugular and Flood joined Collins in the sin-bin for killing the ball.

Loki Crichton slotted the resulting penalty, but the crucial play came from Dupuy as he darted over before getting back up to kick the conversion.

Matthew Jones had a 40m penalty late on to win it for Worcester but his effort missed the target.

Worcester director of rugby Mike Ruddock:

"It was a great contest, everything the Premiership is about in terms of intensity and effort.

"We weren't quite as clinical as we should have been, which is a lesson for us to learn.

"But on a positive note, we were there or thereabouts until the death with a top club like Leicester."

Leicester head coach Heyneke Meyer:

"It was high-intensity rugby - one of the best games I've seen in the Premiership.

"We have worked really hard on our fitness, and if it wasn't for our fitness, we would have lost that game.

"We have eight or nine top-class players currently injured, and we are far from where we need to be, but we will keep our feet on the ground."

Worcester: Latham, Pennell, Rasmussen, Tuitupou, Benjamin, Crichton, R. Powell, Mullan, Lutui, Horsman, Rawlinson, Bowley, Wood, Collins, Talei.
Replacements: B. Jones for Latham (69), Fellows for Crichton (80), Fortey for Lutui (64), Tuamoepeau for Horsman (33), Gillies for Rawlinson (71), Horstmann for Collins (67).
Not Used: M. Jones.

Sin Bin: Collins (57).

Leicester: G. Murphy, Varndell, Smith, Mauger, J. Murphy, Flood, Dupuy, Ayerza, Kayser, White, Corry, Kay, Croft, Herring, Crane.
Replacements: Erinle for J. Murphy (80), B. Youngs for Dupuy (71), Chuter for Kayser (59), Cole for White (64), Wentzel for Kay (53), Woods for Herring (72).
Not Used: T. Youngs.

Sin Bin: Crane (36), Flood (60).

Ref: Andrew Small (RFU).

Att: 10,500

see also
Tigers swoop for scrum-half Dupuy
16 Jul 08 |  Leicester
Crichton admits to penalty nerves
15 Sep 08 |  Worcester
Wasps 10-11 Worcester
14 Sep 08 |  English
Murphy glad to be back in action
17 Sep 08 |  Leicester
Leicester 24-22 London Irish
13 Sep 08 |  English

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