LEICESTER STEP UP CONSTRUCTION

Record Aviva Premiership champions the Leicester Tigers are hopeful that they will be able to complete the building of their hotel at Welford Road by the time the Rugby World Cup 2015 hits the country.

The club is hoping that they will be able to secure permission for their grand plan of building the 140 room, four star hotel on the old region of the Granby Hills by the start of the tournament.

FLOOD INJURY WORRIES

Toby Flood has been added to Leicester Tigers injury worries with damage to his knee ligaments sustained against Sale over Christmas.

Flood will likely be out for 4-6 weeks and looks set to miss England’s opening Six Nations match against the Scots and potentially their second against Italy too.

COCKERILL UNHAPPY WITH SALARY CAP

Cockerill, the director of the Leicester Tiger’s rugby association has made a statement saying that the salary cap imposed on most of the European clubs has resulted in a loss of the competitive spirit among the players of the various clubs.

This statement came immediately after the tigers lost to Ulster and did not manage to make it to the Heineken Cup.

LEICESTER FACE CLERMONT

Leicester take on Clermont in what promises to be a fierce encounter on Sunday. The Tigers travel to Clermont on Sunday before the return next weekend aiming to end Clermont’s 33 match unbeaten run on home soil.

The atmosphere at Clermont with its passionate local fan base adds to a squad with tremendous strength in depth which has seen the French side go without a defeat at home since November 2009.

HEMINGWAY LEAVES LEEDS

Dan Hemingway has left Leeds Carnegie for Leicester Tigers. The back-row forward, 22, made his Tigers debut in 2008 but has played in the Championship for the past two seasons on loan with Nottingham.

That will offset the loss of former Wales international Rhys Oakley.

After 137 games since joining the club in 2007 from Newport Gwent Dragons, Oakley, 30, has decided to exercise a release clause in his contract.

Hemingway is Leeds' third new signing, following the arrival of fly-half Joe Ford and full-back Stevie McColl at Headingley.

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SKIVINGTON PRAISES LEICESTER HUNGER

George Skivington has said that Leicester is incredibly hungry about getting more success."I've said to so many people I've really enjoyed playing for Leicester this year I've really genuinely enjoyed playing rugby," he tells BBC East Midlands.

"Playing at Welford Road, running out in front of that crowd, when they start stomping their feet when you run on the pitch - it's pretty special."

The 28-year-old lock left Wasps after nine years last summer for the Tigers and has not looked back.

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LEICESTER BEATS WASPS

Wasps started life without the director of rugby Tony Hanks by being defeated by Premiership leaders Leicester.

Fly-half Jeremy Staunton scored a try and kicked 11 points for the Tigers, who opened up a 10-point lead at the top of the table.

Lock forward Steve Mafi also crossed for the home side.

Wasps, who parted company with Hanks on Thursday, could only reply with four Dave Walder penalties on their way to a seventh defeat in nine games.

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WHEELER FAILS TO BECOME CHAIRMAN

Leicester Tigers director Peter Wheeler has failed to become the chairman of European Rugby Cup. The former England hooker lost out to Jean-Pierre Lux, who was appointed to serve a three-year term following a meeting in Dublin.

Lux won through following a ballot of directors from England, France, Wales, Scotland, Ireland and Italy.

The Frenchman was first elected as European Rugby Cup independent chairman in 1999.

Lux said: "I am delighted to have received the backing of the ERC board of directors.

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CASTROGIOVANNI AGREES NEW DEAL

Prop Martin Castrogiovanni has signed a new deal with Leicester tigers. The prop, 29, has become a key player and popular figure since joining in 2006, but his deal expires this summer.

Director of rugby Richard Cockerill feared Castrogiovanni would be lured away by a more lucrative offer.

But Castrogiovanni told the club's website: "Money is not everything. I like it here and I always had in my mind that I wanted to stay."

LEICESTER CLOSE TO SIGNING BROOKES

Leicester are close to signing Kieron Brookes from Newcastle after they agreed a deal with the club. Brookes, 20, signed a one-year deal at Newcastle in May and is also attracting interest from Munster and Leinster.

But Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill said the link to Brookes was just "speculation".

"We are in process of doing all our signings. When we have signed them we will let you know," he said.

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