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Craig Porter 14th Dec 2008 - 9:04

Tigers target is to get Carter

Dan Carter plays his first game for Perpignan against Leicester in the Heineken Cup today.

The superstar stand-off begins a seven-month spell in the south of France and is pleased to be starting with a Heineken Cup clash.

"The fact there are three games left in the European Cup was a big draw card," said the All Blacks number 10.

"The European Cup is a tournament I've watched and admired from New Zealand. I wanted to play rugby at the highest level and, with the European Cup, club rugby doesn't get any higher than that."

His team are going to have to perform at their best and with his assistance to have any hope of extending their involvement in the Heineken Cup. They are third in the group, propped up only by winless-minnows Treviso.

Last week's 38-27 defeat in Leicester will have been encouraging for Perpignan. Consider that they're at home and have one of the world's greatest players in their ranks and the 8/11 to win in 80 minutes begins to look attractive - even more so, the 10/11 giving up a two-point handicap.

But let's not get carried away - this is Super Dan, not Superman. He's been in France less than a week, he's trying to settle in to a new country not just a new club and has had just one training session. He cannot single-handedly inspire this team to greatness - not this week anyway.

It would be nice though, and not improbable, to see Dan Carter score the first try on his debut at 16/1.

Leicester will probably welcome the hype surrounding Carter's arrival. They'll be fighting each other off to be the first to flatten the New Zealander. That and the fact they can secure a spot at the top of the pool above the Ospreys with a win means there's unlikely to be anything but a Leicester victory today.

With a two-point start the Tigers are 10/11 but with the range of alternative handicaps available you can take a larger price, albeit giving up the head-start.

Leicester minus eight points at 3/1 is maybe just one for the brave but there's a good chance that the English side can overcome a three-point deficit at a tasty 6/4.

As an interest bet, Toby Flood and Jordan Crane have both scored three tries in their last two Heineken Cup matches and can both be backed at 20/1 to score first today.

This match is live on Sky Sports 2 from 15:00 and up to four markets will be available to bet on throughout the game.

15:00 Perpignan v Leicester - view betting

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