Boosts for Mauger, Gibbes

Getty Images

    13 Feb 2017     Getty Images

Leicester have been struggling during recent weeks but turned in a bonus point win to remain in the hunt for a top four place in the Premiership.

Mauger, who has been under pressure since the departure of the club's director of rugby Richard Cockerill, told the Leicester Mercury: "We've been testing our own resilience over the last couple of weeks.

"Although we've tried to bring more out of the guys in terms of confidence to play, you eventually have to take yourself to a dark place on the training field to know that you are capable of doing these things when you are under the pump," he said.

"So I'm really proud of the way we responded when we were under the pump today. I thought our resilience was good and our character was strong.

"We have been building for this the last three weeks," he said.

The side had been rocked when losing 0-43 to Glasgow in their European Cup game but had benefited from two lower-key weeks in the Anglo-Welsh.

"It was good to see the guys loading across the field, getting their eyes up and backing their skills which is something we have talked about and potentially went away from. When you feel a bit beaten down, you tend to close up and we probably did that in those European games," he said.

"We are a good side. We have got a very skilful side and a bunch of guys who care and today they put themselves in position to be a threat the whole time with ball in hand. They defended with their hearts, too. That was all we could ask of them," Mauger said.

The commitment on defence had been outstanding and he paid tribute to former Blues and Hawke's Bay loose forward Brendon O'Connor who led the defensive effort.

Gloucester were held tryless as a result.

"We won't get carried away but it was definitely a better performance on defence," he said.

Meanwhile, former All Blacks, Maori All Blacks and Chiefs lock Jono Gibbes is set to be named head coach of Ulster replacing Neil Doak on a two-year contract.

Gibbes, who worked with Ireland coach Joe Schmidt for three years with Leinster, and for six years in total as forwards coach, was involved in three Heineken Cup win, a European Challenge Cup win and two Pro12 titles.

He has been assistant coach at Clermont Auvergne since 2014 and was signed until 2018 but was able to utilise a release clause in the event of being named a head coach.