Early on it was the boot that ruled the roost, and in particular the boot of the evergreen Grayson who, despite playing his 200th game for the Saints last weekend, looks as metronomic as ever.
He nailed three penalties in the first half-hour as the home side went 9-0 up before the man who replaced him in the England side Jonny Wilkinson got the Falcons first points with a trademark penalty.
However, the only try of the half came from another of Northampton’s former England stars, the forgotten Jon Sleightholme who in his first Premiership game for nearly two years, ghosted over for a try and although Wilkinson got his second penalty, the Saints were a deserved 14-3 up at half-time.
Grayson extended the home side’s lead shortly after the half-time interval with his fourth penalty and they effectively sealed the win when co-skipper John Lelie touched down five minutes later, Grayson adding the extras.
Grayson capped an impressive individual performance with a try of his own ten minutes before the end, his conversion taking his tally to 21 for the game.
Although Stuart Grimes garbbed a consolation try at the end for Newcastle, it did not take the shine off a useful win for Wayne Smith’s side.
NorthamptonTries: Sleightholme, J Leslie, GraysonCons: Grayson 2Pens: Grayson 4
NewcastleTries: GrimesCons: WilkinsonPens: Wilkinson 2