Match Report

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Newcastle Falcons - 0

Friday 16th Oct 2015

Newcastle Falcons produced a stirring second-half comeback but it was not enough to start the new Aviva Premiership with a win, Gloucester emerging 39-27 victors.

Billy Twelvetrees kicked nine penalties and a conversion for a Cherry and Whites side who led 27-3 at half-time, the Falcons finding their rhythm in the second 40 but falling just short.

Out-scoring their West Country visitors by three tries to two, it was the penalty-count which hurt the home side Twelvetrees was in the mood to make them pay for it, the former England man calmly slotting a pair of penalties inside the opening nine minutes to build them a buffer.

Falcons Fly Half Mike Delany marked his Premiership debut by drilling a penalty from the half way line, but it was his side’s only points of the half as Gloucester turned the screw.

Twelvetrees nailed a pair of long-range penalties before the quarter mark to take the lead to nine, Matt Kvesic delivering the first try of the night when the former England flanker profited from a blind-side break in the left corner.

Before the half-hour the damage increased further, Charlie Sharples sprinting down the right from 40 yards out for Gloucester’s second and final try.

Twelvetrees converted and added a further penalty before the break, Newcastle 24 points down but showing a marked improvement after the resumption.

Twelvetrees’ sixth penalty spurred them into action after a pair of re-set scrums on their own try-line, Simon Hammersley hitting a devastating attacking line as Delany put him through a hole.

The Durham University graduate cut against the grain and beat the last man for power, Delany adding the extras from in front as his team capitalised on their pressure.

Delany and Twelvetrees traded penalties as both sides strived to keep the scoreboard moving, Newcastle managing it to greater effect when Chris Harris sped home on the hour mark.

The Cumbrian timed a perfect run at first receiver, taking inside ball and blasting a path through the defensive line.

He still had plenty to do, the former Carlisle and Tynedale man speeding his way past the Full Back before grounding in front a jubilant South Stand.

Delany added the conversion to make it a 16-point game, Twelvetrees pulling Gloucester three away with a penalty from the right.

Newcastle found a third try when forward pressure around the left corner provided George McGuigan with a platform from which to launch himself over, the replacement hooker awarded a try after prolonged deliberation from the television match official.

Twelvetrees’ ninth penalty of the night removed any hopes of a home win despite the Falcons taking the second half 26-12, Newcastle falling a try short of a pair of bonus points as the clock came into play.