Take Cup form into Premiership, says Tait

Thursday 16 November 2017 Written by: Adam

The Falcons were 53-41 winners at Wasps less than a fortnight ago when the teams played out a 14-try thriller, Newcastle tightening things up in last weekend’s 57-0 home win over Cardiff Blues to go top of their group.

Keen to carry on the momentum as they visit Coventry for the second time inside a fortnight, Tait said: “It has been a good couple of weeks for the club in the Anglo-Welsh Cup with two bonus-point wins and the lads are very pleased with their efforts for the most part.

“Some of our attacking play down at Wasps was very good but the most important milestone was getting the nil against Cardiff Blues, because we knew we had some defensive improvements to make from the previous week.

“A lot of guys came in who maybe hadn’t had too much game time, and they really took their opportunity. They showed what they are about, it’s good for the competition within our squad and we’re hoping now to carry it into the league.”

Newcastle go into the 5.15pm kick-off two places and five points ahead of Saturday’s hosts, Tait stating: “We’re not reading too much into Wasps’ early form because we know they’ve got threats, and they’ve started to improve in the Premiership. They have top-class talent who can score from anywhere so we won’t be taking them lightly, and it demands a massive defensive effort on our part if we want to come out with anything.

“Wasps have got some big guys in that pack who will carry hard, get them some good go-forward and look to release their threats in the backs. We’ve also got to be disciplined when the likes of Jimmy Gopperth are able to punish us through penalties, and we know how good a kicker he is from his time up here. We have to be nailed-on with everything to get the points but we’re confident we can do it, and we’ve been going well.

“We can’t give Wasps any easy territory or needless three-point attempts because those are the things which will hurt us, and there are a lot of things in terms of our own attack which we need to make sure we execute consistently.”

The Falcons’ record on the road this season reads played five, won four, with the only competitive defeat on their travels seeing them take a four-try bonus point at Premiership champions Exeter Chiefs.

“We’ve got the monkey off our back a little bit in terms of our away wins this season, but we want to keep that going,” said Tait.

“If we could go down to Wasps and put in a performance that would be brilliant in terms of getting us back to where we want to be, and we have three really big games against the teams around us during this current block of games with playing Gloucester at home then Northampton away.”