Planet Rugby

Gopperth gives Wasps the boot

03rd January 2010 18:41

Share:

Tuipulotu v Wasps

Rugged: Tane Tuipulotu makes ground against Dan Ward-Smith

Newcastle ground out a rugged 12-6 Guinness Pemiership victory over Wasps at Adams Park on Sunday, with Jimmy Gopperth landing the points.

Gopperth kicked four penalties from seven attempts to conclude the Falcons' three-match losing streak and register their first win in nine visits to High Wycombe.

It was yet another poor advert for the Premiership, which continues to enjoy a boom in attendance figures despite the poor standard of rugby produced this season.

On Saturday Saracens director of rugby Brendan Venter launched a scathing attack on the standard of refereeing, which he blames for ruining the game as a spectacle.

But official Tim Wigglesworth was hardly responsible for the lack of entertainment on shown at Adams Park on Sunday.

Endless kicking, much of it aimless, combined with high error and penalty counts, tested the patience of supporters in freezing conditions.

England and Lions lock Simon Shaw rose above the mediocrity to become the dominant forward on the pitch, closely followed by Newcastle skipper Carl Hayman.

But there were precious few highlights in a drab encounter settled by penalties, with Shaw foiled by Hayman in the only try-scoring chance.

Wasps, who dispatched Harlequins in front of a 76,000 crowd at Twickenham last Sunday, used three kickers in Dave Walder, Danny Cipriani and Mark van Gisbergen.

Walder and van Gisbergen landed three points and the tone for the afternoon was set in the opening exchanges which saw Walder and Gopperth swap penalties.

Spotting space on the left, Cipriani attempted to launch a counter that was undermined by his poor, looping pass.

Wasps' scrum was enduring a torrid time, back-pedalling furiously at every set-piece, and Newcastle were also in the ascendancy at the lineout.

Despite all their problems, Wasps would have been ahead but for two missed penalties from the usually reliable Walder, the Premiership's most prolific kicker this season.

Gopperth squandered three points from in front of the posts and just as the match seemed destined to reach the half-hour mark without a single highlight, Wasps burst into life.

Winger David Lemi combined with Cipriani to make the initial break, leading to Shaw and Mark Robinson driving the team forward with a mixture of brute strength and slick footwork.

Shaw finished the move by barging over but Hayman managed to get a hand beneath the ball and TMO Roy Marfleet refused to award the score.

Gopperth struck the crossbar with a long-range penalty but was more successful with a marginally less difficult attempt moments later before missing a third on the stroke of half-time.

Newcastle ended a first half lacking in thrills 6-3 ahead and after the interval Wasps continued to be punished by referee Wigglesworth.

Once more they crumbled at the scrum and Gopperth made them pay with three points, but centre Steve Kefu made a telling break to dent Newcastle's momentum.

Walder was replaced by Van Gisbergen with Cipriani switching from full-back to fly-half and the England international took over the kicking responsibilities.

He pulled his first attempt, which should have been routine, and Wasps turned to Van Gisbergen for the next chance which the substitute slotted over.

Gopperth restored Newcastle's six-point advantage with his fourth penalty.

Wasps launched a late flurry, including a dangerous attack with the last play of the game, but it was too little, too late.

The scorers:

For Wasps:
Pens: Walder, Van Gisbergen

For Newcastle:
Pens: Gopperth 4

Wasps: 15 Danny Cipriani, 14 Tom Varndell , 13 Dominic Waldouck, 12 Steve Kefu, 11 David Lemi, 10 Dave Walder, 9 Mark Robinson, 8 Dan Ward-Smith, 7 Will Matthews, 6 John Hart (c), 5 George Skivington, 4 Simon Shaw, 3 Ben Broster, 2 Rob Webber, 1 Tim Payne.
Replacements: 16 Joe Ward, 17 Sakaria Taulafo, 18 Bob Baker, 19 Marty Veale, 20 Dan Leo, 21 James Honeyben, 22 Ben Jacobs, 23 Mark Van Gisbergen

Newcastle: 15 Alex Tait, 14 Gcobani Bobo, 13 Rob Vickerman, 12 Tane Tu'ipulotu, 11 Charlie Amesbury, 10 Jimmy Gopperth; 9 H Charlton, 8 Filipo Levi, 7 Brent Wilson, 6 Josh Afu, 5 Tim Swinson, 4 James Hudson, 3 Carl Hayman (c), 2 Rob Vickers, 1 Jon Golding.
Replacements: 16 Matt Thompson, 17 Micky Ward, 18 Grant Shiells, 19 Mark Sorenson, 20 Will Welch, 21 Chris Pilgrim, 22 Rob Miller, 23 Tom Biggs.

Referee:Tim Wigglesworth

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle vs Sale15:15
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow vs Newport Gwent D'gons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Lyon vs Montpellier18:00
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:00
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821