Planet Rugby

Saints fly past Falcons

31st December 2011 15:48

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Northampton cruised to a comfortable 32-14 Aviva Premiership win over Newcastle at Kingston Park on Saturday.

A brace from Ben Foden and two tries in the first 20 minutes of the second half handed Saints a bonus point.

Northampton got off to a great start and were ten points up in as many minutes, courtesy of a Ryan Lamb penalty and a converted try from Ben Foden.

But any hopes the visitors had of killing off the contest in the first half were extinguished as the hosts struck back with a penalty and try of their own from wing Suka Hufanga. Jimmy Gopperth kicked the three pointer, but was wide with the conversion minutes later, meaning the Saints held a narrow lead.

Lamb's second penalty of the afternoon made it 15-10 on the half-hour but Gopperth responded quickly for the hosts, meaning there was only two points in it as the sides headed down the tunnel at half-time.

It was the Falcons who struck first in the second period, and again it was that man Gopperth on target with a penalty to give them the lead.

But the early concession appeared to stir Northampton in to life, and they would go on to score two tries before the hour mark to take the contest by the scruff of the neck.

First, on 49 minutes, Foden crossed for his second of the afternoon, before Soane Tonga'uiha charged over. Lamb converted the first effort, making it 14-25 in the visitors' favour.

The burden was now on the hosts to forge a path back into the contest but, despite the efforts of the enterprising Gopperth, the Saints defence held strong.

And, when Tom May added a final score for Northampton in the final seconds, the victory was rubber-stamped.

The scorers:

For Newcastle:
Try: Hufanga
Pens: Gopperth 3

For Northampton:
Tries: Foden 2, Tonga'uiha, May
Cons: Lamb 2, Myler
Pens: Lamb 2

Yellow card: Swinson (Newcastle - 76th min)

Newcastle: 15 Greg Goosen, 14 Jeremy Manning, 13 James Fitzpatrick, 12 Luke Eves, 11 Suka Hufanga, 10 Jimmy Gopperth, 9 Jordi Pasqualin, 8 Ally Hogg,7 Will Welch, 6 Richard Mayhew, 5 Adriaan Fondse, 4 James Hudson, 3 Euan Murray, 2 Rob Vickers, 1 Grant Shiells.
Replacements: 16 Joe Graham, 17 Ashley Wells, 18 Dan Frazier, 19 Tim Swinson, 20 Mark Wilson, 21 Taiasina Tu'ifua, 22 Chris Pilgrim, 23 Tom Catterick.

Northampton: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Vasily Artemyev, 13 George Pisi, 12 James Downey, 11 Jamie Elliott, 10 Ryan Lamb, 9 Lee Dickson, 8 Roger Wilson, 7 Phil Dowson, 6 Courtney Lawes, 5 Mark Sorenson 4 Samu Manoa, 3 Paul Doran Jones, 2 Dylan Hartley (c), 1 Soane Tonga'uiha.
Replacements: 16 Mike Haywood, 17 Alex Waller, 18 Brian Mujati, 19 Christian Day, 20 Ben Nutley, 21 Martin Roberts, 22 Stephen Myler.

Venue: Kingston Park
Referee: Tim Wigglesworth

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