Match Report

Exeter Chiefs - 0

Newcastle Falcons - 16

Saturday 11th Mar 2023

The teams were tied 5-5 going into the final quarter before a barnstorming finish from the Devon outfit saw them building too much of a lead for the Falcons to rein in.

The visitors began the game at high tempo, keeping the ball in hand and enjoying early incursions into Chiefs territory through Adam Radwan, Elliott Obatoyinbo and Matias Moroni, among others.

Newcastle turned down a simple kick at goal from a penalty in front of the posts and then failed to convert the line-out, but the men in green were showing no shortage of attacking intent.

The Falcons kicked a further three penalties to the corner without return, and the frustration was growing for the visitors as Exeter kept 15 men on the field despite conceding penalty after penalty in or around their own 22.

The pressure finally told just after the quarter mark when the Premiership’s top try-scorer, Mateo Carreras, sped over in the left corner – the Argentina winger fed by Brett Connon before stepping the last man.

Newcastle’s lead lasted just five minutes as the Devonians scored on their first visit into the Newcastle half – kicking a penalty to the right corner from where hooker Dan Frost was driven over.

The Falcons ended the half strongly on the back of a strong wind, Obatoyinbo kicking a 50-22 and his enjoying a string of red-zone penalties as an ill-disciplined Exeter side racked up a massive penalty count with a string of cynical violations.

Ian Whitten was the only man to see yellow just before the break for a deliberate knock-on 15 metres out, but despite their best efforts Newcastle had to be content with a 5-5 half-time score-line.

Playing into the teeth of a strong wind the Falcons maintained their momentum after half-time, Exeter conceding another wave of penalties and finally earning a yellow card when Aidon Lewis was binned for a high shot on Obatoyinbo.

The numerical discrepancy did not throw the Chiefs from their task, with a period of close-range pick and go eventually seeing them awarded a penalty five metres out which Jack Nowell tapped quickly to score.

Harvey Skinner’s conversion put them seven ahead going into the closing quarter, and the tide had turned when they awarded a penalty try two minutes later in a passage which saw Callum Chick sin-binned for sacking a maul.

Sam Simmonds crossed for their bonus-point try in the right corner on 72 minutes, by which time the result was beyond all doubt.

**Newcastle Falcons:** 15 Elliott Obatoyinbo (Iwan Stephens, 65), 14 Adam Radwan, 13 Matias Moroni, 12 Matias Orlando (Pete Lucock, 72), 11 Mateo Carreras, 10 Brett Connon, 9 Michael Young (captain, Sam Stuart, 54); 1 Adam Brocklebank (Logovi’i Mulipola, 58), 2 Jamie Blamire(Ollie Fletcher, 72), 3 Richard Palframan (Mark Tampin, 61), 4 Pedro Rubiolo, 5 Sebastian de Chaves, 6 Freddie Lockwood (Matthew Dalton, 65), 7 Callum Chick, 8 Carl Fearns (Tom Marshall,65).

**Scorers –** Tries: Mateo Carreras.

**Exeter Chiefs:** 15 Josh Hodge (Joe Simmonds, 61), 14 Jack Nowell (captain), 13 Ian Whitten, 12 Solomone Kata (Rory O’Loughlin, 67), 11 Olly Woodburn, 10 Harvey Skinner, 9 Sam Maunder (Jack Maunder, 61); 1 Scott Sio (Danny Southworth, 72), 2 Dan Frost (Jack Yeandle, 57), 3 Marcus Street (Patrick Schickerling, 65), 4 Jannes Kirsten, 5 Jack Dunne, 6 Dave Ewers, 7 Jacques Vermeulen (Aidon Davis, 32), 8 Sam Simmonds.

**Scorers –** Tries: Dan Frost, Jack Nowell, Penalty try, Sam Simmonds. Conversions: Harvey Skinner.

**Referee:** Tom Foley. **Attendance:** 9,198.