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Leicester’s Freddie Burns prepares for end to ‘rollercoaster’ ride

The Tigers face Wasps in their Premiership play-off semi-final which could be the fly-half’s last game for them before returning to Bath

Freddie Burns is the first to admit his three years at Leicester have not gone to script. The plan was that a dose of Tigers pragmatism under Richard Cockerill would harness his mercurial talents and catapult the fly-half to sustained England recognition. But the reality has been somewhat different.

It is easy to forget Burns arrived at Leicester having started two of England’s matches on the 2014 tour to New Zealand. A preoccupation with nailing down a World Cup spot precipitated a drastic loss in form, however, and illness – he was diagnosed with Bell’s palsy in the summer of 2015 – injuries and the inertia that kicked in at Welford Road under Cockerill ensued. But the irony is that he has found his best form in a Leicester shirt in the most turbulent of seasons, all the more so after it was announced he would be the makeweight of George Ford’s return to the Tigers at the end of the season.

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