Change of levels for Lions

A pair of Lions tourists will be in second-team action for their club side this evening. [more]

Change of levels for Lions

A pair of Lions tourists will be in second-team action for their club side this evening.

England internationals Harry Ellis and Julian White will be appearing for the Leicester Tigers Development XV in the Guinness A League clash with Worcester.

White, who played in all three Tests for the Lions on their 2005 tour of New Zealand, will start in the front row, while 2009 Lion Ellis is named at No9.

The duo are looking to prove their fitness and form as the Tigers prepare for the business end of the season and the defence of their Guinness Premiership crown.

This time last year, Ellis had just been named in the Lions squad to tour South Africa having impressed for both Leicester and England in 2008/09.

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But fast-forward a season and things have not gone quite so smoothly for the 27-year-old. 

The scrum-half has only been involved in five first-team fixtures so far this term as a reoccurring knee problem has hampered his progress.

Ellis is yet to play a full 80 minutes of senior rugby this season and his problems have seen him slip behind both Ben Youngs and James Grindal in the Tigers’ pecking order, with Danny Care, Paul Hodgson and Youngs all featuring for England in his extended absence.

Just like Ellis, White has also found himself overtaken by two colleagues in the race for Tigers start.

The veteran tight-head has had to watch Italian giant Martin Castrogiovanni and new England cap Dan Cole battle for the No3 jersey.

Both Ellis and White are now fit enough to appear for the senior side but Ellis in particular has been missing match sharpness due to a lack of game time.

With the postponement of previous A League fixtures meaning gaining match fitness has proved harder than usual, both men will be desperate to make an impression at Welford Road tonight.

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