Leicester's Thomas Waldrom gets Richard Cockerill's blessing

Thomas Waldrom on the charge for Leicester
Waldrom made a huge impact at Welford Road last season

Leicester Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill has said there is no way he could deny Thomas Waldrom the chance of playing at a World Cup.

The New Zealand-born number eight has been called up to the England squad as cover for the injured Nick Easter.

Waldrom, 28, is due to link up with the squad in New Zealand on Wednesday.

"From a club point of view it's not ideal," Cockerill told BBC Radio Leicester. "But you can't deny them that opportunity can you?"

Waldrom was part of England's extended World Cup preliminary squad but has yet to be capped.

He played for New Zealand Under-21s and New Zealand Maori but qualifies for Martin Johnson's team because of an English grandmother.

Last season, his first in England, Waldrom was named the Premiership players' player of the season.

Cockerill quipped: "Guys here want to play for their country, Thomas has decided he's English, so this is his country.

"It's disappointing but the loyalty that we give to the players will hopefully come back to us in bucketloads later in the year.

"He may well not be put into the squad so may come back next week but that does not help us for Saracens next week."

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