NEWCASTLE HAVE one foot back in the Aviva Premiership following their 9-18 win over Bedford in the first leg of the Championship final at Goldington Road on Thursday night. But Falcons’ head coach Dean Richards was quick to point out that the job was far from done: “We said that we would come up here and put in a workmanlike performance, and that is exactly what we did,” Richards told the Falcons’ website.
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Posted 57 days ago
THE RHETORIC of battles is always used in professional rugby, as if the weeks of weights and hours of Xbox were shared experiences with servicemen and women garrisoned around the globe. The battle of the breakdown, the scrap at the set piece and more commonly the fight for the title and the relegation dog-fight.
Posted 57 days ago
IN A cruel twist of fate, Bristol became the only side to defeat Newcastle this season in any form of competition, only to learn that Leeds had secured the fourth play-off place by beating Nottingham. The Falcons, who had not lost since Saracens beat them in the penultimate game of last season, were worthy winners on Saturday courtesy of 14 points from the boot of Adrian Jarvis and a first half Fautua Otto try.
Posted 64 days ago
IT’S QUIET, drinking in the last chance saloon. The barman has gone home and told London Welsh to lock up on their way out. Because, unless someone from the Championship can defeat unbeaten Newcastle; and someone who would also fail the Premiership criteria, the saloon door will swing closed and the Kassam lights will go out for rugby.
Posted 71 days ago
A CHAMPIONSHIP club is guaranteed a place in this year’s final of the British and Irish Cup; and it is little surprise that they will meet one of the Irish Provincial ‘A’ sides. Although this was principally a British and Irish Cup weekend for the five Championship sides who had made it through to the knock-out stages, one re-arranged league encounter leaves two of the four Championship play-off places wide open.
Posted 78 days ago
DONCASTER, WHO began league life in Yorkshire 2, and rejoice in being the ‘most promoted club in England, have three games left to avert relegation to National League One. But despite emptying the tank on Friday night, the Knights went down 21-27 to second-placed Nottingham, whose win has guaranteed them a play-off place.
Posted 85 days ago
BRISTOL HAVE parted company with Liam Middleton, following their defeat by Moseley at Billesley Common.
The former Westcountry giants’ second consecutive league loss means that making the play-offs is far from guaranteed, as Leeds are breathing down their necks, a point behind with a game in hand.
Both clubs have tricky encounters against sides above them and Middleton’s departure, following an initial…
Posted 99 days ago
ANY THOUGHTS of prematurely engraving the name of Newcastle Falcons on the Championship silverware were put firmly on hold when Bedford came within seconds on inflicting a first defeat on the run-away league leaders. It took an 80th minute try by winger Noah Cato, converted by Jimmy Gopperth, to spare the Falcons’ blushes at Kingston Park on Friday night.