Planet Rugby

Falcons claim victory over Exiles

18th February 2012 16:57

Share:

Jimmy Gopperth Newcastle Falcons 2011

Points man: Jimmy Gopperth

A fourteen-man Newcastle kept their Aviva Premiership survival hopes alive with a priceless 19-10 win over London Irish at Kingston Park on Saturday.

Jimmy Gopperth and Tom Homer demonstrated why they are two of the most reliable kickers in the Premiership by exchanging penalties early on.

But it was the visitors who scored the game's first try, the 44th that Newcastle have conceded already this season. After the Falcons' line-out was disrupted, Matt Garvey hacked the ball ahead and flying winger Sailosi Tagicakibau gathered and touched it down.

The league's bottom club fought hard to get back into the game though and, after a period of sustained pressure, Gopperth took the opportunity to slot over a drop-goal and reduce the deficit to 10-6 at half-time.

Gopperth narrowed the gap even further early in the second half with another successful penalty attempt.

But Newcastle's task was made even more difficult on the hour mark as South African lock Adriaan Fondse was given a straight red card.

Irish were unable to take advantage of the extra man though and Falcons' Kiwi winger Ryan Shortland showed great opportunism to intercept a Delon Armitage pass and sprint half the length of the pitch to put his side 16-10 ahead.

With ten minutes remaining, Gopperth missed the chance to put the game beyond the visitors with a long-range penalty but he was given a second bite at the cherry moments later.

This time the New Zealander made no mistake and calmly slotted the ball between the posts to give Newcastle a vital win in their quest for survival.

Late yellow cards for Jon Golding and Richard Thorpe meant the game finished on a slightly sour note but the Falcons won't mind too much as they held on to claw their way to within six points of safety.

The scorers:

For Newcastle:
Try: Shortloand
Con: Gopperth
Pen: Gopperth 3
Drop: Gopperth

For London Irish:
Try: Tagicakibau
Con: Homer
Pen: Homer

Newcastle: 15 Greg Goosen, 14 Tom Bedford, 13 Jamie Helleur, 12 James Fitzpatrick, 11 Ryan Shortland, 10 Jimmy Gopperth (capt), 9 Chris Pilgrim, 8 Mark Wilson, 7 Will Welch, 6 Ally Hogg, 5 Tim Swinson, 4 Adriaan Fondse, 3 Euan Murray, 2 Rob Vickers, 1 Grant Shiells.
Replacements: 16 Michael Mayhew, 17 Jonny Golding, 18 Ashley Wells, 19 Andrew van der Heijden, 20 Taiasina Tu'ifua , 21 Will Chudley, 22 Joel Hodgson, 23 Ricki Sherrife.

London Irish: 15 Delon Armitage, 14 Tom Homer, 13 Jonathan Joseph, 12 Jonathan Spratt, 11 Sailosi Tagicakibau, 10 Dan Bowden, 9 Darren Allinson, 8 Richard Thorpe, 7 Kieran Roche, 6 Matt Garvey, 5 Bryn Evans, 4 Nick Kennedy (capt), 3 Faan Rautenbach, 2 David Paice, 1 Max Lahiff.
Replacements: 16 James Buckland, 17 Clarke Dermody, 18 Paulica Ion, 19 Bob Casey, 20 Ed Siggery, 21 Marland Yarde, 22 Adrian Jarvis, 23 Paul Hodgson.

Referee: JP Doyle

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 20
Northampton vs London IrishNorthampton vs London Irish Preview
Newcastle vs SaracensNewcastle vs Saracens Preview
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
RaboDirect PRO12
Sunday , April 20
Cardiff Blues vs ScarletsCardiff Blues vs Scarlets Preview
Newport Gwent D'gons vs OspreysNewport Gwent D
More RaboDirect PRO12 fixtures
Amlin Challenge Cup
Friday , April 25
Northampton vs Harlequins20:00
More Amlin Challenge Cup fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , April 19
Stade Francais vs Bordeaux-Begles20:35
More Top 14 fixtures
Super Rugby
Friday , April 25
Blues vs Waratahs17:35
Brumbies vs Chiefs17:40
Sharks vs Highlanders19:10
More Super Rugby fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , April 19
Bath 32 - 20 WorcesterBath vs Worcester Report
Exeter 12 - 55 SaleExeter vs Sale Report
Wasps 38 - 30 GloucesterWasps vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Zebre 26 - 13 EdinburghZebre vs Edinburgh Report
Connacht 23 - 32 MunsterConnacht vs Munster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Oyonnax 19 - 19 ToulouseOyonnax vs Toulouse Report
Perpignan 31 - 46 ToulonPerpignan vs Toulon Report
Racing Metro Paris 22 - 6 Clermont AuvergneRacing Metro Paris vs Clermont Auvergne Report
Grenoble 21 - 21 Bayonne
Biarritz 19 - 13 Brive
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Chiefs 17 - 18 CrusadersChiefs vs Crusaders Report
Stormers 18 - 3 LionsStormers vs Lions Report
Sharks 19 - 8 CheetahsSharks vs Cheetahs Report
Waratahs 19 - 12 BullsWaratahs vs Bulls Report
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , April 18
Harlequins 24 - 20 LeicesterHarlequins vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
RaboDirect PRO12
Leinster 62 - 7 Benetton TrevisoLeinster vs Benetton Treviso Report
Glasgow 27 - 9 UlsterGlasgow vs Ulster Report
More RaboDirect PRO12 results
Top 14
Castres 22 - 15 MontpellierCastres vs Montpellier Report
More Top 14 results
Super Rugby
Hurricanes 39 - 20 BluesHurricanes vs Blues Report
Melbourne Rebels 22 - 16 Western Force
More Super Rugby results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , April 13
Saracens 28 - 24 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Irish 40 - 12 NewcastleLondon Irish vs Newcastle Report
Saturday , April 12
Worcester 33 - 38 ExeterWorcester vs Exeter Report
Leicester 27 - 15 WaspsLeicester vs Wasps Report
Gloucester 17 - 18 BathGloucester vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens1976
2Northampton1966
3Bath2064
4Leicester Tigers2064
5Harlequins2058