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Aviva Premiership Rugby round-up: Round 13

Dean Richards believes there is a lot more to come from Newcastle Falcons after they made it six wins on the spin at home in all competitions.

The Falcons notched back-to-back Aviva Premiership Rugby wins with a narrow 26-25 success over Northampton Saints to move up to tenth in the table.

And with the team in good form, Richards is optimistic that they can build on recent performances.

“The quality of our play in the last three or four games has been top drawer and we won today against a quality side – it was one of our best performances,” he said.

"We showed lot of character and effort but I think there is a lot more to come from this side.”

That win for Newcastle was all the more valuable as London Irish were beaten at home by Exeter Chiefs, 22-15.

As a result Irish are now five points adrift at the foot of the table, while Chiefs trail Saracens by four in second.

Meanwhile, on Saturday, Wasps made it five straight Aviva Premiership Rugby wins as they moved up into the top four with a 24-18 win over Bath Rugby.

They now sit third after back-to-back wins away to last year’s finalists, but director of rugby Dai Young insists the primary target is to finish in the top six before they start to look any higher.

"To come here and get a win, we have got to be pleased,” Young said.

"From my point of view, we've had two good wins and gone from ninth to third. But two bad losses, and you can go from third to ninth. We have just got to keep the momentum going.

"A lot of people are talking about top four. We will start talking about top four in the last month of the season, if we have got a chance of being there.

"Our target, not only for this season, but the next couple of seasons, is that we want to be a consistent top-six team, because we haven't been. We want to be in Europe and at the top table of European rugby consistently."

And Worcester Warriors got their first win since November in the league, with new signing Francois Hougaard impressing on debut. The Springbok scrum-half scored a try in the 31-23 win over Sale Sharks, and Dean Ryan admitted his arrival had inspired the team.

"He only arrived on Monday, but Francois was outstanding," the Worcester boss said. "He's a class player and his confidence spread through the team."

Elsewhere on Saturday, Saracens overcame a first-half sending off for Schalk Brits to down Gloucester 25-12, while on Friday night Harlequins beat Leicester 25-19.
 
Sunday
 
Newcastle Falcons 26 Northampton Saints 25

 
Newcastle Falcons
Tries: Tait, Harris
Conversions: Goode 2
Penalties: Goode 4
 
Northampton Saints
Tries: Gibson, Dickson 2
Conversions: Hanrahan 2
Penalties: Myler 2
 
Referee: Wayne Barnes
Attendance: 7,218
 
London Irish 15 Exeter Chiefs 22
 
London Irish
Tries: Treviranus, Ojo
Conversions: Brophy Clews
Penalties: Brophy Clews
 
Exeter Chiefs
Tries: Lewis
Conversions: Steenson
Penalties: Steenson 5
 
Referee: Dean Richards
Attendance: 5,892
 
Saturday

Bath Rugby 18 Wasps 24
 
Bath Rugby
Tries: Homer, Mafi
Conversions: Homer
Penalties: Priestland 2
 
Wasps
Tries: Halai 2, McIntyre
Penalties: Daly, Jackson, Gopperth
 
Referee: Tom Foley
Attendance: 13,322
 
Saracens 25 Gloucester Rugby 12
 
Saracens
Tries: Ransom
Conversions: Hodgson
Penalties: Hodgson 6
 
Gloucester Rugby
Penalties: Hook 4
 
Referee: Craig Maxwell-Keys
Attendance: 8,432
 
Worcester Warriors 31 Sale Sharks 23
 
Worcester Warriors
Tries: Kirwan, Hougaard, Pennell
Conversions: Heathcote 2
Penalties: Heathcote 4
 
Sale Sharks
Tries: Seymour, Taylor, Haley 2
Penalty: Cipriani
 
Referee: Greg Garner
Attendance: 7,156
 
Friday
 
Harlequins 25 Leicester Tigers 19
 
Harlequins
Tries: Yarde
Conversions: Botica
Penalties: Botica 6
 
Leicester Tigers
Tries: Thacker
Conversions: Burns
Penalties: Bryant 3, Burns
 
Referee: JP Doyle
Attendance: 14,800
 

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