WORCESTER Cavaliers suffered their first defeat of the season in a thrilling battle with Leicester Tigers Development at Sixways last night.

The Cavs were looking to maintain their unbeaten start to the season in the Premiership Rugby Shield but were undone 24-21 by a powerful Tigers side who pulled clear in the second half.

A penalty try in the dying minutes did mean Cavs took a losing bonus point from the game and they remain top of the Northern Conference despite the defeat.

Cavs started the game brightly and went ahead though hooker Isaac Miller's close-range try and Scott van Breda's conversion.

Tigers drew level minutes later through Taylor Gough but Cavs regained control thanks to a Gareth Simpson score and another van Breda conversion to make it 14-10 at half-time.

Leicester dominated the second period and two tries in five minutes ultimately sealed the win.

Back row George Martin crashed over the whitewash and that was quickly followed by Gough's second of the night.

Both conversions from Johnny McPhillips were successful and the lead grew to 10.

Cavs fought hard in the closing stages to find a way back into the game and the award of a penalty try from referee Greg Macdonald handed the home side a life-line.

But the Tigers side managed to see out the final minute and took their first win of the season.

Cavaliers: Heward; Fidow (David 35), van Breda, Butler, McNab; Scully (Morris 61), Simpson; Owen (Holsey 41), Miller (Cutting 41), Walsh (Hartpury) (Bingham 56), Cox, Scott, Monks (Boxall 79), Williams (Burnett 78), Dodd (Montgomery 41).

Replacements: Cutting, Holsey, Bingham (Sheffield Tigers), Burnett (Hartpury), Montgomery, Morris, Boxall (Hartpury), David.

Tigers Development: Steward; Tonks (Birmingham Moseley), Thomas, Viljoen, Bungaroo; McPhillips, van Poortvliet; Whitcombe, Clare, Dimen, Jordan, Martin, Smith, Gough, Coghlan.

Replacements: Dawidiuk (Birmingham Moseley), Lines, Cortes, Manz, Ashworth, Findlay (Yorkshire Carnegie), Costelow, Glynn.

Attendance: 500.

Referee: Gregor Macdonald.


14m | Miller try 5-0

15m | Van Breda con 7-0

16m | Gough try 7-5

17m | McPhillips con 7-7

27m | Simpson try 12-7

28m | Van Breda con 14-7

31m | McPhillips pen 14-10

54m | Martin try 14-15

55m | McPhillips con 14-17

59m | Gough try 14-22

60m | McPhillips con 14-24

79m | Penalty try 21-24