Norfolk ace George Catchpole enjoying chance to shine for Leicester Tigers
- Credit: Tiger Images
As the focus of the rugby world moves to the Six Nations, plenty of opportunities begin to arise in club rugby.
One of the players taking advantage of the absence of international players is Norfolk-born George Catchpole.
The 21-year-old made his first appearance of the season for Leicester Tigers on Saturday, starting at outside-centre in an LV= Cup pool clash with local rivals Northampton Saints.
He was replaced late in the game as Leicester won 17-8 in front of more than 24,000 spectators, setting an attendance record for the pool stage of the cup competition.
Catchpole, originally from St Olaves, near Great Yarmouth, has recently featured for second-tier side Doncaster Knights as he recovers full fitness after a foot injury.
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'I've played four games for Doncaster and that's gone really well,' the former North Walsham junior player said.
'Their results have not been great, but their facilities are really good so it's been a good chance to play in the Championship.
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He added: 'It was great to play in front of a sold-out crowd, especially against Northampton at home in front of your own fans, and to get the result.
'I've never experienced a derby atmosphere like that before for the first team and there were a lot of Saints fans and Tigers fans, so it was really good.'
Catchpole is now hoping to be in action for Leicester again tomorrow, as Tigers play their final LV= Cup pool game away at Cardiff Blues.
However the former England Under-20 youngster, who was part of the team which defended England's IRB Junior World Championship title last summer, is unsure if he will remain in the first-team fold for the remainder of the season.
'We've got this game on Saturday and I can then review how I did with the coaches and see what they want to do from there. So it's out of my hands really,' the former Norwich School pupil continued.
'But both teams are playing for a home semi-final, so it's a really big encounter against a club with a really good history in the competition.'
– Do you know of an aspiring sport star from Norfolk? Contact reporter David Freezer on 01603 772418 or firstname.lastname@example.org
– Tigers match tickets are available from the ticket office at Welford Road, phone 0116 319 8888 or book online at www.leicestertigers.com