Wasps loss ‘one that got away’ for Falcons


Sunday Sun - - Rugby Union -

DEAN Richards ad­mits New­cas­tle Falcons’ 23-22 home de­feat by Wasps felt like the “one that got away”.

The Kingston Park out­fit squan­dered a lead to al­low Lima Sopoaga to kick the vis­i­tors to vic­tory.

The re­sult means the Falcons have lost all three of their home games this sea­son and have taken just one win from their first five, leav­ing them sec­ond bot­tom of the Premier­ship.

The Falcons scored three tries thanks to a Mark Wil­son ef­fort and a Johnny Wil­liams brace but missed chances came back to haunt the hosts as Dai Young’s side turned the game around late on.

And for di­rec­tor of rugby Richards, New­cas­tle’s lack of ac­cu­racy and ruth­less­ness was a cause for frus­tra­tion.

“W h e n you look at t h e op­por­tu­ni­ties we cre­ated and should have nailed, it’s def­i­nitely one that got away,” said di­rec­tor of rugby Richards. “They scored three times purely through us be­ing un­able to ex­e­cute our exit strat­egy. It’s a sim­ple thing to do and doesn’t take much to do, but we didn’t do it and it cost us dear. “It’s a real shame. We had so many op­por­tu­ni­ties you couldn’t count them on two hands, it was that ridicu­lous and we just couldn’t fin­ish them off. “It was a bit bizarre at the end. They took so long with the kick the ref­eree said he was go­ing to play the time and we missed op­por­tu­ni­ties there as well.” In a fran­tic fin­ish, Wasps sur­vived six min­utes of added time and a Falcons at­tack that went t h r o u g h 20 phases b e f o r e Johnny Wil­liams’ two tries for New­cas­tle Falcons were ul­ti­mately in vain on Fri­day end­ing in a for­ward pass af­ter Lima Sopoaga’s long-range penalty with 59 sec­onds on the clock went wide.

“It’s all about get­ting re­sults and we’re happy to have done that,” Young said.

“In those last few min­utes it could have gone ei­ther way, but you can’t be dis­ap­pointed when you come up here and win be­cause New­cas­tle are a qual­ity side.

“We showed a lot of guts in the end. We tried to throw it away but we came through and I think New­cas­tle will be dis­ap­pointed be­cause of the num­ber of line breaks they made and they couldn’t quite fin­ish them off. “We found a way to stay in the game and see our­selves home and I’m re­ally pleased. The qual­ity we had com­ing off the bench made a big dif­fer­ence. Every­body talks about Nathan Hughes and his ball-car­ry­ing but he made some big i n t e r v e n t i o n s de­fen­sively and Dan Robson added a bit of tempo. “From our point of view we’ve had two six-day turn­arounds and come to two dif­fi­cult places in Sale and New­cas­tle and edged two re­sults that could have gone ei­ther way, that’s re­ally pleas­ing.”

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