Chesney out to end hoodoo

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The Independent Online

The Saracens veteran Kris Chesney is hoping to celebrate his record-breaking appearance at Leicester tomorrow with a landmark victory.

Saracens have not won in 30 visits to Welford Road, going back to 1964, but the 34-year-old blind-side flanker, who will set a new mark in the Guinness Premiership when he runs out for his 194th appearance in the top flight, is hoping to change all that.

"It's a great honour and one that I am very proud of," said Chesney, who made his 300th appearance for Saracens earlier this season. "Things like this are a real highlight for me because over my career, I've not had a lot to shout about in terms of trophies or other honours. Running out at Welford Road will be a proud moment and hopefully, come the final whistle, it will have been a game that both the team and I will have enjoyed."

Fifth-placed Saracens, who trail the Tigers, in third, by six points, ended a three-game losing run with a 24-20 win at home to Sale last Sunday. They have, however, lost their last three away games.

"We were pleased to get the win last weekend but we're still not playing at the level we need to be," said their director of rugby, Alan Gaffney. "We've made steps forward in the past few weeks and I think we've started to show more adventure and confidence in our play and are returning to the style that has served us so well in the previous 18 months."

Leicester have won one of their last four matches in the Premiership and have lost twice this season at their Welford Road home. "We know that Saturday's match will be very tough for us," said their head coach, Marcelo Loffreda. "We lost to [Saracens] away earlier in the season so we know that we have to perform well."

Both sides have a new-look threequarter line, with Leicester welcoming back Seru Rabeni and Dan Hipkiss and Saracens picking Francisco Leonelli and the former Great Britain rugby league captain, Andy Farrell.

"Faz [Farrell] brings us a lot of experience and his return adds to the competition at inside-centre," said Gaffney.