Walder reacts to Bath loss

Saturday 31 December 2022 Written by: Adam

Newcastle led 10-7 at the half-way stage of a rain-affected Gallagher Premiership encounter, with Walder saying afterwards: “We managed the conditions really well in the first half without possibly getting the points we deserved.

“In the second half Bath managed them well and managed to convert it on the scoreboard, which I guess was the difference.

“We should have come away with more points when we had that dominance in the first half, and it was a great piece of defence which saw Gary Graham held up over the try-line.

“Fair play to Bath, they did what they needed to do to stay in the contest, and it got them the win.”

Frustrated by a number of officiating decisions on the day, the Falcons boss said: “We’ll be seeking clarification on a couple of things with the refereeing department because Bath played with 16 men at one stage, and they also made a substitution at a penalty when we had a five-metre scrum, which my understanding is you’re not allowed to do.

“We will seek clarity on that and ask why it was allowed to happen, but ultimately Bath managed the conditions better in the second half and got their reward.”

Ending the year at tenth in a tightly-contested table, Walder added: “The league is brilliantly competitive, and it’s hard to predict the result on any given week.

“With respect, nobody likes playing on pitches like we had to today, but it is what it is, and it’s the same for both teams.

“Even in those conditions and on that pitch I think both teams produced a watchable game, and that’s to their credit. The Gallagher Premiership is a great product and you get that variety.

“It hasn’t gone our way today and we’re really disappointed by that, but it just goes to demonstrate what a good league this is that we have games with drama and intensity every single weekend.”

The Falcons’ first assignment of the new year comes on Saturday when they host champions Leicester Tigers, who will be looking for a response following their 40-5 defeat at Sale Sharks.

“Leicester will be a wounded animal after how they played on Friday night,” said Walder.

“I thought Sale were outstanding, but Leicester are very tough and it will be interesting to see how they react.

“Richard Wigglesworth hasn’t had too long to put his own stamp on the team since taking over as head coach, so you’d expect them to be similar to how they’ve been playing the last couple of years.

“They’ll play a forward-based game with a good kicking game behind it, and it’s important we bounce back and get back to winning ways.”

[**Click here**][1] to buy tickets for Saturday’s 2pm kick-off against Leicester Tigers.

[1]: https://www.eticketing.co.uk/newcastle-falcons/EDP/Event/Index/1748?position=2