Triple try scorer Chris Harris gives his opinion on the Falcons' group-winning 7s performance.
Centre Chris Harris was in unsurprisingly good spirits when he caught up with the Falcons website this weekend.
Fresh from a stellar performance which saw the Falcons maintain their unbeaten record in the group stages of the Premiership Rugby 7s and emerge as victors in group D of the competition, Carlisle-born Harris was reflective but positive about the team's performance.
"It was obviously really tough. The first game was quite frantic; we didn't really know what to expect so it took us a game to get used to the pace and to get used to playing with each other, because we hadn't had that much time to train together as a side. But the second game was much more composed and our communication was up; after that we just got into our shape a lot better, and we progressed from there."
Having already picked up wins against Leicester Tigers and Sale Sharks, the Falcons faced stiff competition in their final game of the night against fellow finalist contenders London Welsh. However rather than succumb to pressure, the Falcons team were aiming to remain composed throughout, eventually recording a 14-5 victory over the newly promoted club.
Harris explained: "You've just got to trust each other, trust the team, trust the shapes we were playing and trust our abilities. And we had to be really patient – it's about waiting for our opportunities and then taking them."
Having begun his first full-time season at the club as a member of the 2013 Premiership Rugby 7s Series, Saturday's event marked 23 year-old Harris' second appearance in the competition, and where he managed to open his scoring account in the annual summer show, with a try apiece in each of the Falcons' three games.
"Last year I didn't score any tries in the first round so I was adamant I was going to get at least one this weekend. But in the end I was just lucky enough to get on the end of some really good team work."
One particularly impressive move in the Falcons' second game saw the former England Counties and Tynedale RFC centre pick up the ball on halfway and evade the Sale Sharks defense to streak home, scoring the Falcons’ fifth try of the game.
"A bit of space opened up and I took it. I was slightly greedy to be honest in going with it but fortunately that paid off in the end." Harris said.
Although pleased with the team's performance last Saturday, Harris is under no illusions about the challenge that lies ahead this weekend, when Newcastle Falcons will join seven other teams from across England and Wales in the Series finale at Twickenham Stoop.
"This Friday will be a step up again but we don't know exactly what to expect or what the other teams will be like until we've played them. Watching the other groups there have been a lot of good individuals, the likes of Steph Reynolds at Gloucester and Charlie Walker at Quins look pretty dangerous, but we'll just have to graft as a team and graft even harder. We're looking forward to it; it's exciting and good fun so he team will rest up this weekend and then get ready to progress into the finals next week."
The 2014 Premiership Rugby 7s Series final takes place at Twickenham Stoop this Friday, 8th August with the action kicking off at 6pm. Tickets are available online at www.quins.co.uk or by calling the Quins Ticket Office on 0208 410 6000 with a special offer of 4 tickets for the price of 3 for anyone using the promo code 2014HARLEQUINS7s.