TOP BAR - Fixtures

Mark Wilson insists optimism still high at Newcastle Falcons

After an unbeaten pre-season and a win in their Aviva Premiership Rugby opener against Sale Sharks – optimism was everywhere at Newcastle Falcons.

But they were brought back down to earth with a bump by Bath Rugby last weekend at the Rec and Falcons No.8 Mark Wilson admits his side learned a valuable lesson.

Todd Blackadder’s Bath side ran in eight tries in a record 58-5 win in the West Country as Dean Richards’ side were caught out early and often.

But Wilson – who has started both games for the Falcons at No.8 – is taking the positives from such a chastening experience early in the season.

“We had a really good start against Sale but last week was one of those where we have to park it as soon as we can,” he said.

“We did not turn up physically or mentally and that is what happens if you take a team lightly because the Premiership is so competitive, you are going to get punished.

“We are going to replicate the performance we had against Sale this weekend and show the right kind of attitude and I think we will be fine.

“There are no major changes we need to do, it is just a case of making sure the boys have that individual responsibility to prepare mentally and actually turn up on the day and have some pride in the shirt.

“I think maybe a little bit of complacency crept in because of how well the week before went. We just showed up. Bath is a tough place to go, just like anywhere in this Aviva Premiership, and you have got to be on your money especially away from home but it is a lesson we have learnt, a harsh lesson.

“It has probably happened at the best time of the season because now we know when we do go away to these teams we have to prepare properly.”

After victory over the Sharks on the first weekend at Kingston Park – next up are Leicester Tigers on Sunday live on BT Sport.

Vereniki Goneva – signed from the Tigers this summer – will be keen to make an impression for the Falcons but Wilson insists his side will need to get the basics right first before their winger can run riot.

“The boys are excited for Leicester. Regardless of what happened last week it is Leicester at home. It is one of the best teams in the league. It is what every professional player gets excited about, especially on our home pitch,” he added.

“We are certainly a more confident side so we are looking forward to it and ready to play.

“They have not had the start they wanted either but they do simple things very well. We are not going to change our game plan massively. We have to go with the right attitude, knowing they are a physical side and ready to compete at the set-piece.

“I think in all these Premiership games this season, the set-piece is so important and it gives us the platform for us to get into our game so it is something we will work hard on this week and make sure is right.”

Latest News

London Irish name side for Ealing Trailfinders clash

London Irish have named a 30-man squad for this Friday’s pre-season clash with Ealing Trailfinders at Hazelwood (kick-off 7.30pm). The…

Gloucester Rugby announce line-ups for preseason friendly at Leinster

Gloucester Rugby will give game time to a number of their first team squad in Leinster on Friday evening as…

American rugby players and coaches to get once in a lifetime opportunity

THIRTY American rugby players and coaches are being handed the chance of a lifetime to train in England with Premiership…

Stephen Myler: Northampton Saints ready to fight for the title

Stephen Myler is predicting the closest ever Aviva Premiership Rugby campaign and believes his Northampton Saints side will be right…

Sonatane Takulua expecting big things from Newcastle Falcons this season

Sonatane Takulua believes unity and a collective purpose, combined with an improved playing pool, can help propel Newcastle Falcons up…

Sonatane Takulua

Wasps name team for first pre-season fixture against Ulster

Dai Young has named a 26-man squad to take on Ulster Rugby at Kingspan Stadium in the first pre-season fixture…

Anglo-Welsh Cup 2017-18 launched

WORCESTER WARRIORS have the honour of hosting the opening match in this year’s Anglo-Welsh Cup on Friday 3 November, when…

Leicester Tigers win the Anglo Welsh Cup

Ally Hogg pleased by Newcastle Falcons’ early progress

Ally Hogg believes Newcastle Falcons are well set to attack the new Aviva Premiership season after a double dose of…

Ally Hogg

Topsy Ojo relishing Exiles return to Aviva Premiership Rugby action at HQ

Topsy Ojo believes there could be no more fitting way for London Irish to announce their return as an Aviva…

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua sees Philadelphia trip as a ‘great opportunity’

Newcastle Falcons’ Sonatane Takulua insists his side’s September clash with Saracens in Philadelphia will be no holiday for the players,…

Sonatane Takulua

Harlequins statement: Luke Wallace and Jonas Mikalcius

Harlequins can confirm today (Tuesday 15th August) that flanker Luke Wallace dislocated his hip during the pre-season friendly against London…

Luke Wallace

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

London Irish will host Bath Rugby at the Madejski Stadium in the opening round of the Anglo-Welsh Cup on Saturday…

London Irish kick-off Anglo-Welsh Cup at home to Bath

HITZ graduate secures first full time job after being inspired by Premiership Rugby final

A teenager from Leigh who overcame a troubled home life and tackled confidence and communication issues thanks to Premiership Rugby…

Lucy Neal

Nick Kennedy delighted with first pre-season hit-out for London Irish

London Irish director of rugby Nick Kennedy is looking forward to seeing his side build on Saturday’s thrilling contest against…

Nick Kennedy

Philadelphia bound Nick Civetta can’t wait for American Series challenge with Newcastle Falcons

NICK CIVETTA HAS had an unlikely path to the top level but as he prepares to embark on his second season…

Nick Civetta

Demetri Catrakilis relishing chance to reunite with old friend Tim Swiel

Harlequins fly-half Demetri Catrakilis has revealed he is ready to join forces with  compatriot and old acquaintance Tim Swiel – insisting…

Worcester Warriors to use number of players in Hartpury test

Warriors will look to use up to 37 players during their fixture against Hartpury College this Saturday in their first…

GJ van Velze

Emergency Services workers invited to London Double Header

Saracens are offering up to eight free tickets to any member of the London Emergency Services for the upcoming London…

London Double Header

Newcastle Falcons teams for double-header v Doncaster and Nottingham

Three-time French title winner Maxime Mermoz is among the Newcastle Falcons players making their debuts in Saturday’s home double header…

Nili Latu