Rugby Union: Underwood to leave Leicester

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The Independent Online
Rory Underwood has been released by Leicester. The former England winger, who turned 34 last week, will sign off from his 14-year Tigers career with a testimonial match at Welford Road on 26 July.

Leicester's chief executive, Peter Wheeler, said: "Rory has had a fantastic career for the Tigers, England and the Lions, but he felt it was time to leave as training during the day on a daily basis was proving difficult with his RAF commitments."

Underwood, who scored 134 tries in 236 appearances for Leicester, won a record 85 caps for England and played six times for the Lions. He scored an English record 49 tries.

"My final game for Leicester will give me a chance to thank all the Tigers supporters who have given me such great pleasure over the years," Underwood said yesterday.

Northampton's Mike Dods has been called into Scotland's injury-hit tour party in South Africa ahead of today's clash with Northern Transvaal in Pretoria.

The European Conference has been expanded from 24 to 32 teams for the 1997-98 season with 16 French teams. Welsh representation has been cut from seven to four following the reduction in size of the Welsh Rugby Union's First Division.

SCOTLAND XV: H Gilmour (Heriot's FP); A Stanger (Hawick), C Murray (Hawick), R Eriksson (London Scottish), C Joiner (Leicester); D Hodge (Watsonians), A Nicol (Bath, capt); G Graham (Newcastle), G Bulloch (West of Scotland), M Stewart (Northampton), S Campbell (Melrose), S Grimes (Watsonians), E Peters (Bath), C Hogg (Melrose), S Holmes (London Scottish). Replacements: S Longstaff (Dundee HSFP), M Dods (Northampton), G Burns (Watsonians), S Murray (Bedford), B Stewart (Edinburgh Academicals), S Brotherstone (Melrose).

NORTHERN TRANSVAAL: G Bouwer; G Esterhuizen, J Schutte, K van Vuuren, C Steyn; R de Marigny, C Breytenbach; L Campher, H Tromp, M Hurter, D Badenhorst, R Schroeder, J Brooks, A Richter (capt), S Bekker. Replacements: K Engelbrecht, F Meiring, J Taljaard, N van der Walt, J Otto, M Proudfoot.