Premiership: Exeter Chiefs 31-10 Leicester Tigers
|Exeter (21) 31|
|Try: Waldrom 2, Penalty try, Devoto Con: Steenson 4 Pen: Steenson|
|Leicester (0) 10|
|Try: Thacker, Kitto|
Thomas Waldrom scored two first-half tries as Exeter leapfrogged Leicester in the table with a bonus-point win over the Tigers at Sandy Park.
His first came from a catch and drive, and the forward put the ball against the base of the post for his second.
Leicester had Graham Kitchener sin-binned for a deliberate knock-on, leading to a penalty try for the hosts.
The visitors improved, Harry Thacker and Jono Kitto going over, but Ollie Devoto claimed a fourth Chiefs try.
The only cloud over a dominant Exeter performance was a shoulder injury to centre Henry Slade, which forced the England international off in the first half.
Waldrom has been the Premiership's leading try-scorer in the past two seasons, and his double against his former club took him to 45 from his last 68 appearances.
Leicester's touchdowns came after a scoreless first half effort, though Richard Cockerill's side had some intense spells of pressure.
Kitto's score came straight from kick-off, exploiting some poor defending, while Devoto crashed through after an inch-perfect pass for arguably the best try of the match.
Exeter Chiefs head coach Rob Baxter told BBC Radio Devon: "I just feel really pleased for the players - the truth is, all they've really done in this last eight week block is sit down and be really honest about things.
"What this season is going to end up like is now back in our hands - once you're in the top four it's for you to decide how the rest of the season goes - it's in our hands now, and that's how I want it to be.
"Let's get excited about the things we want to achieve, we want to achieve a lot - we were in a Premiership final last year and we want to be champions one day."
Leicester Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill told BBC Radio Leicester: "It was a little bit frustrating and indisciplined in the first half and we gave away cheap field possession, turning the ball over too easily.
"We came back pretty strongly in the second half and scored a couple, so that was encouraging, but I was disappointed by Thomas Waldrom's (second) try. I thought that he was held up - and they are big moments.
"We've got a player at the bottom of the post and Waldrom is on top of him. The ball is not placed at the bottom of the post, so it's not a try.
"I thought the referee had a really poor game, scrum he was poor, and refereed the two sets of mauls differently."
Exeter: Dollman; Nowell, Devoto, Slade, Woodburn; Steenson (capt), Chudley; Moon, Yeandle, Francis, Lees, Hill, Dennis, Armand, Waldrom.
Replacements: Cowan-Dickie; Rimmer, Holmes, Atkins, Horstmann, Maunder, Hill, Short.
Leicester: Burns; Thompstone, Roberts, Tuilagi, Betham; Williams, Harrison, Genge, McGuigan, Cilliers, Slater (capt), Fitzgerald, Williams, O'Connor, Hamilton.
Replacements: Thacker, Mulipola, Cole, Kitchener, Evans, Kitto, Worth, Brady.
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