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Match Reaction: Worcester Warriors 11 Newcastle Falcons 9

Dean Richards rued his side’s missed chances after Newcastle Falcons suffered a third defeat of the season at Worcester Warriors in a physical encounter at Sixfields.

Wynand Olivier scored the game’s only try in the 18th minute as he sprinted clear of the Falcons defence after a mistake by winger Sinoti Sinoti.

Tom Heathcote and Ryan Lamb both successfully kicked penalties for the Warriors, while Newcastle kept in touch throughout.

But they struggled to break down Worcester’s stubborn defence as the home side won for the first time this Aviva Premiership Rugby season.

“We got a point from a game where we didn’t get a point last season, we had the Lion’s share of possession but we didn’t make the most of it. That was the disappointing part,” said Richards.

“Worcester only really had one chance all game and they took it.

“In fairness we didn’t create too many chances of our own, it was one of those turgid horrible games and I could see most of the coaching teams from both clubs falling asleep at times.

“Simon Hammersley was outstanding, as were our back row of Ally Hogg, Mark Wilson and Will Welch.

“Hoggy showed why we think he is one of the best thinking footballers in the game, and the back row were outstanding.

“The disappointing thing was that we didn’t have the accuracy we wanted in attack, and as a consequence there were opportunities which went missing.”

Worcester lock Darren Barry hailed his side’s defensive efforts after they held firm despite an onslaught in the final minutes from a desperate Newcastle.

And he hopes they can now go on a strong run and put their early season woes behind them.

“We spoke about how important this was in the week. I would not say it was a relief but it is nice to get a win, although I think we deserved more from some of our other matches,” he said.

“I don’t think you can fault the lads, there were a few mistakes. The lineout was obviously an issue but there were no excuses left out on the pitch, the lads looked after each other.

“That is a big think about the squad this year we always look after each other. The result might not always be perfect and the performance might not always be perfect but you have got 15 guys out on that pitch that will work hard for each other.,

“There have been questions about defence in the last couple of weeks which I don’t think is particularly fair really.

“We work very hard defensively and we have obviously been a massive threat with ball in hand in the last couple of weeks but this week was about fronting up defensively to a very good Newcastle team.”

Worcester Warriors:  Shillcock, Humphreys, Olivier, Willison, Vuna (Adams 35), Heathcote (Lamb 52), Arr, Ruskin (Leleimalefaga 63), Annett (Bregvadze 70), Schonert (Johnston 36-40, 70), O’Callaghan, 5 Barry, Faosiliva, Kirwan (Cox 77) Dowson (C)

Replacements: Scotland-Williamson,  Baldwin

Newcastle Falcons: Hammersley, Tait (Agulla 63), Waldouck, Socino, Sinoti, Delany (Hodgson, 67),Takulua (Young 46), Vickers (Rogers 60), Lawson (Sowrey 60), Welsh (Wilson 46), Green, Olmstead (Witty 60), Wilson, Welch , Hogg (Temm 76).

Worcester Warriors:

Tries: Olivier

Penalties: Heathcote, Lamb

Newcastle Falcons:

Penalties: Delany (2), Hodgson

Referee: Tom Foley

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