Kieran Brookes: Prop grateful to Leicester Tigers teammates
Leicester Tigers prop Kieran Brookes believes the influence of teammates Dan Cole and Martin Castrogiovanni has aided his development as a player.
The 22-year-old tight-head has worked with the England and Italy internationals in training since arriving at Welford Road in 2011.
"They've passed on the technical side of scrummaging and the attitude on the pitch," Brookes told BBC Look North.
"It's how you carry yourself, I learned a lot. They're massive figures."
He continued: "I've tried to take in as much as I can off them."
Learning at Leicester
Kieran Brookes left Kingston Park for Leicester as a raw tight-head with potential, but his injury after three games affected his first-team prospects.
"It was limited in my first year as I was injured for 10 months and when I got back fit, I tried to get game time but there are three internationals at tight-head in front of me," Brookes said.
"A lot has turned around at Newcastle Falcons since I was last here, so I'm hoping to bring what I've learned up here and play as much as I can."
Brookes, an England Saxons international, arrived at Leicester from Newcastle Falcons, but an injury in only his third match ended his season prematurely.
Since then the form of his tight-head teammates has left him short of game-time, but a return to his former club on dual registration terms earlier this week has seen him link up with former Tigers director of rugby Dean Richards at Kingston Park.
"I was very excited, I'd heard a lot about what Dean and John Wells and the other coaches had brought to the club.
"Him and Wells were a massive incentive, being down at Leicester I'd heard a lot about him and speaking to a lot of Harlequins boys, who've worked alongside him as well, he's such a huge figure.
"He's very well respected and looked up to straight away so it's awesome to work with him.
"It just appealed to me to be back in the mix, be back up here any play as much rugby as I can."