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Premiership

Wasps 35 Falcons 21

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Tuesday 20 September 2022

Newcastle Falcons began their Premiership Rugby Cup campaign with defeat in Coventry on Tuesday night, as Wasps took the full five points.

The hosts led 21-0 at half-time and registered the first score of the evening after just five minutes, kicking a lineout to the right corner and working the ball infield from where Kieran Curran ploughed over from a pick-and-go.

Former Falcon Will Haydon-Wood added the simple conversion from in front, Newcastle growing into the game by winning a string of penalties, only for Wasps’ defence to hold firm.

The home side doubled their lead midway through the opening half, with a similar pattern to their first try as a penalty was kicked to the corner, a maul was worked infield and the resulting pick-and-go brought a try for Greg Fisilau.

Haydon-Wood again slotted the conversion, his side trying and failing to add a third try from a tap penalty five metres out as they were penalised for sealing off at the resulting ruck.

That third try eventually arrived just after the half-hour, again from a lineout in the left corner as hooker Michael van Vuuren scored from a driving maul.

Haydon-Wood’s conversion extended Wasps’ lead to 21-0, and that was how it remained at the break as Newcastle enjoyed a spell of red-zone pressure without managing to make it count on the scoreboard.

The Falcons changed their entire front row at half-time and emerged with renewed gusto for the start of the second 40, winning repeated penalties in the home half and applying forward pressure.

But it was from the backs that the try eventually came on 51 minutes, Nathan Greenwood marking his debut with a try when the 18-year-old received a pass from Zach Kerr 35 metres out down the right – Jeremy Civil having opened the gap with a back-hand offload.

Louie Johnson added the conversion from wide out on the right, but Wasps had the four-try bonus point just before the hour mark when they kicked a penalty to the right corner and Van Vuuren once again steered a maul over the try-line.

Replacement Harry Craven followed that up with a more expansive try three minutes later when the replacement collected an inside offload to score their fifth converted try.

Greenwood continued to be a bright spark in attack for the Falcons with a string of runs in broken-field, chipping and chasing down the right and narrowly missing out on a second try.

Wasps were reduced to 14 men when Haydon-Wood was sin-binned for a mid-air shot on Greenwood under a high bomb, and the Falcons found a second try with five minutes to go when lock Josh Peters scored on his competitive debut from a close-range pick and go.

Johnson’s conversion reduced the arrears to 21, but the visitors managed to have the final say when Iwan Stephens scored a converted try in the left corner from a quick transfer through the hands.

Newcastle Falcons: 15 Elliott Obatoyinbo (Rory Ward, 68), 14 Nathan Greenwood, 13 Zach Kerr, 12 Louie Johnson, 11 Iwan Stephens, 10 Josh Thomas (Jeremy Civil, 20), 9 James Blackett (Ben Douglas, 55); 1 Conrad Cade (Mark Dormer, 40), 2 Charlie Maddison (captain, Ollie Fletcher, 40), 3 Conor Kenny (Richard Palframan, 40), 4 George Merrick (Will Hopes, 55), 5 Josh Peters, 6 Matt Deehan (George Bennett-Teare, 48), 7 Marcus Tiffen, 8 Tom Marshall.

Scorers – Tries: Nathan Greenwood, Josh Peters, Iwan Stephens. Conversions: Louie Johnson 3.

Wasps: 15 Olly Hartley, 14 Immanuel Feyi-Waboso, 13 Reikiti Maasi-White, 12 Will Simonds, 11 Luke Mehson, 10 Will Haydon-Wood (captain), 9 Francois Hougaard (Harry Craven, 40); 1 Zac Nearchou (Archie McArthur, 36), 2 Michael van Vuuren, 3 Elliot Millar-Mills, 4 Cam Dodson, 5 Theo Vukasinovic, 6 Fyn Brown, 7 Kieran Curran, 8 Greg Fisilau (James Tunney, 40).

Scorers – Tries: Kieran Curran, Greg Fisilau, Michael van Vuuren 2, Harry Craven. Conversions: Will Haydon-Wood 5.

Referee: Andrew Jackson.

Source – Newcastle Falcons Rugby


Premiership

Cokanasiga confirms future

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Bath Rugby can confirm England international Joe Cokanasiga has committed his future to the club.

The 25-year-old has been in fine form this season, scoring four tries in nine Gallagher Premiership matches to date, and joins Tom Dunn, Will Stuart, Sam Underhill, Cameron Redpath and Ben Spencer in extending his time at The Rec. 

“Joe has been excellent for us this season and we’re delighted he will be staying with us,” Head of Rugby Johann van Graan said.

“He has great physical attributes which he uses to great effect, and his offloading ability in contact has provided us with fantastic attacking opportunities.

“He is an exciting player for us and we have no doubt he will continue to be an integral member of our squad.”



Cokanasiga has flourished under van Graan and has had a notable influence in games due to his power and pace. 

Since arriving in the West Country, the bulldozing wing has featured over 50 times for the Blue, Black and White whilst also making a significant impact on the international stage.

Debuting in 2018 against Japan, Cokanasiga has scored 12 tries in 14 Test matches, adding to his 21 in Bath colours. 

“There are goals I still want to accomplish here,” he said. 

“I really want to mark my time at the club by winning trophies; that’s a big ambition of mine. 

“A lot of change has taken place over the past few years, but this season I’ve found consistency in my performances. I feel I’ve positively contributed to the club’s progression and I’m excited by what’s to come in the next chapter.”


 

JOIN JOE AT THE REC FOR OUR REMAINING HOME GAMES!

Bath Rugby return to action on Saturday 18 February against London Irish before hosting Bristol Bears on Friday 24 February.

Exeter Chiefs head to The Rec on Sunday 26 March in our penultimate home outing.

Whatever takes your fancy, get your tickets!

BUY YOUR TICKETS NOW!


 

 

Content & Images from – Bath Rugby


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Premiership

Chiefs fullback agrees new deal

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Exeter Chiefs

By Mark Stevens
31/1/23

Josh Hodge says he’s ‘over the moon’ to have agreed a new long-term deal with the Exeter Chiefs.

The gifted full-back has pledged his future to the Devon club and believes an exciting period lies ahead for him and everyone at Sandy Park.

Signed in the summer of 2020 from Gallagher Premiership rivals Newcastle Falcons, the 22-year-old has to date made 37 first-team appearances, scoring 39 points in all competitions.

He is seen by many, including Director of Rugby, Rob Baxter, as one of the crown jewels in Exeter’s exciting vision for the future and news that he is staying put for the foreseeable future will be welcomed by everyone connected with the Chiefs.

“To be honest, it wasn’t a hard decision to sign a new contract with this fantastic club,” said Hodge. “Personally, I’m over the moon and I’m looking forward to my future here in the sunny county of Devon.

“There has been a lot of effort, good business decisions and hard work, both in training and on the pitch, to achieve the results the club has achieved in recent years.”

Alongside Hodge, the Chiefs are investing heavily in bringing through their next crop of young talent, such as Dafydd Jenkins, Christ Tshiunza, Marcus Street, Richard Capstick, Sam Maunder, Will Becconsall and Greg Fisilau to name but a few.

“I’m looking forward to working with the team to help the club attain its rightful position towards the top of all the competitions we take part in and justify the efforts of past players and trainers,” added Hodge.

“All the building blocks have been put in place by the board, backroom staff and coaches and it’s up to the team to work tirelessly to put the cherry on the cake and deliver the results the Chiefs and our fans deserve.”

Others within the current Chiefs ranks are expected to confirm they are also extending their stays with the club in the coming days and weeks.

Content & Images from – Exeter Chiefs Rugby


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Premiership

Tigers sign Brown on short-term contract

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Leicester Tigers can confirm the signing of Mike Brown on a short-term contract.

The outside-back joins Tigers after previously representing Harlequins, where he won two Premiership titles, and Newcastle Falcons.

Brown has made 72 Test appearances for England and featured in three Six Nations winning campaigns for the national side.

Speaking about the addition of Brown, Leicester Tigers Head Coach Richard Wigglesworth said: “Mike is an experienced Premiership player, who has represented his country and won trophies at club and Test level.

“His experience and his knowledge is vital during this Six Nations period where we have a number of players away.

“Mike is hungry to prove himself out on the pitch and impressed us with not only what he’s saying and doing off the pitch, but his efforts on the field and willingness to help those guys around him.

“Above all, Mike is a competitor and wants to be successful. We want those attributes in our players and he offers that.”

Discussing the move to Leicester Tigers, Brown said: “To join a club like this with all of its history and players who have been here before, it is amazing.”

“When Leicester Tigers offer you the chance to go into the environment, it is a hard one to turn down.”

Brown joins after a trial period at the club, about which he added: “To get the chance to come into the environment has been great so far and a really positive experience for me.”

“It has just had a great impression on me, led by enthusiastic coaches – one of which in Wiggy I have played a lot of rugby with – and then equally, all of the players have welcomed me in.

“I have felt sharp and it has been really good out on the field with this group of Tigers players.”

Brown recently featured for The Barbarians and, looking ahead to a potential return to professional rugby, said: “I still believe I have a part to play in the game. I didn’t believe it was my time to stop because I felt good and I still feel good.”

“I have been staying fit, wanting to be ready and not just hanging on to hope but being best prepared if it did.”

Brown joins the club effective immediately.

Content & Images from – Leicester Tigers Rugby


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