Leicester Tigers made easy work of Aviva Premiership new-boys on Saturday as they eased to a 31-6 victory at Welford Road.
Leicester Tigers made easy work of Premiership new-boys on Saturday as they eased to a 31-6 home triumph.
Jordan Crane, Graham Kitchener and Blaine Scully all went over for the Tigers in the first half as they opened up a 17-6 advantage, with Rory Clegg responding for Newcastle.
Further converted scores from Dan Bowden and Thomas Waldrom in the second period sealed the win and continued their solid start to the campaign.
The Tigers have yet to fully ignite this season and went down 27-20 to Bath last week, but they have been hampered by injuries to key players. And with Manu Tuilagi, Toby Flood and Ben Youngs all returning for the visit of Newcastle, it looked an uphill struggle for the newly promoted side from the outset.
That was evident in the opening 15 minutes as Richard Cockerill's men took a 12-0 lead. Firstly, Crane powered over from close-range before a burst from Tuilagi ended in Kitchener touching down, with Flood converting.
But to their credit, the Falcons fought back and Clegg kicked two three-pointers – the second a drop-goal – to reduce the arrears to 12-6.
However, Leicester restored their dominance when Scully scampered across the whitewash for his first Premiership try in a Tigers' shirt to ease them clear at the interval.
Newcastle battled bravely early in the second period but the home side's quality eventually told as Bowden secured the bonus-point.
It got worse for the visitors as Kieran Brookes was sin-binned for a late hit in the lead up to the fourth score, and Waldrom added to Falcons' misery with a fifth try.
Tries: Crane, Kitchener, Scully, Bowden, Waldrom
Cons: Flood 2, Williams
Leicester: 15 Blaine Scully, 14 Vereniki Goneva, 13 Manusamoa Tuilagi, 12 Dan Bowden, 11 Adam Thompstone, 10 Toby Flood (c), 9 Ben Youngs, 8 Jordan Crane, 7 Jamie Gibson, 6 Thomas Waldrom, 5 Graham Kitchener, 4 Ed Slater, 3 Logovi'i Mulipola, 2 Neil Briggs, 1 Boris Stankovich.
Replacements: 16 Tom Youngs, 17 Tom Bristow, 18 Dan Cole, 19 Geoff Parling, 20 Julian Salvi, 21 David Mele, 22 Owen Williams, 23 Niall Morris.
Newcastle: 15 Alex Tait, 14 Noah Cato, 13 Adam Powell, 12 James Fitzpatrick, 11 Tom Catterick, 10 Rory Clegg, 9 Warren Fury, 8 Chris York, 7 Will Welch (c), 6 Mark Wilson, 5 Dominic Barrow, 4 Carlo del Fava, 3 Kieran Brookes, 2 Rob Vickers, 1 Franck Montanella.
Replacements: 16 Matt Thompson, 17 Gary Strain, 18 Scott Wilson, 19 Sean Tomes, 20 Andy Saull, 21 Chris Pilgrim, 22 Joel Hodgson, 23 Alex Crockett.
Referee: David Rose
Assistant referees: Roger Baileff, Peter Huckle
Television match official: Keith Lewis