Newcastle Falcons inflicted a first defeat of the season on Northampton Wanderers with a 37-12 win at Kingston Park in one of four Premiership Rugby A League games to take place on Tuesday evening.
With top spot in the Northern Conference already sewn up, the Wanderers were playing for their unbeaten record and that was under serious threat by half-time with Falcons 20 points in front, thanks in part to tries from Ben Stevenson and Zach Kibirige.
A winning smile pic.twitter.com/t6aAb8D3AY
— Newcastle Falcons (@FalconsRugby) April 10, 2018
A second Kibirige interception all but sealed the win, although Northampton hit back through Will Allman and Matt Beesley scores, before a penalty try secured the bonus point for the hosts.
There was good news for Worcester Cavaliers in their 56-12 win over Wasps as Tom Heathcote competed in his first match in more than five months.
The fly-half came off the bench to knock four conversions through the posts, as Worcester built on their 52-21 triumph over Sale Jets last week.
Tom Howe’s marvellous catch from a crossfield kick was the pick of the tries in a game where Worcester crossed eight times to Wasps’ two and academy coach Gordon Ross was particularly pleased with Worcester’s forwards display.
— Worcester Warriors 🏉 (@WorcsWarriors) April 10, 2018
Ross said: “It seemed like the backs got the credit last week as it was a nice evening, but last night the forwards really rolled up their sleeves, especially in the second half, and got the rewards.
“They all did well, particularly Tom Dodd who has been putting in some really good performances over the last few weeks.
“The guys that came off the bench, some of them loan players, also made a massive impact so it was a really good squad effort.”
Elsewhere, Bath United won their first game since September with a narrow 15-7 win over rivals Gloucester.
Tom de Glanville and Paul Grant crossed the whitewash in the first half to give Bath the lead at Kingsholm and though Gloucester responded in the second half, they could only muster a consolation Aaron Hinkley try.
The result moved Bath to within three points of their rivals and ended Gloucester’s slim hopes of reaching the semi-finals.
— Gloucester Rugby (@gloucesterrugby) April 10, 2018
London Irish drew first blood in their double header with Bristol United, fielding a strong side to win 62-5 and boost their chances of finishing sixth in the Southern Conference.
Italian international Luke McLean assisted an Ollie Hassell-Collins try after just six minutes as two tries from Fergus Mulchrone and one each from Topsy Ojo and Ben Ransom gave Irish a commanding half-time lead.
There were six more tries in the second period as Ojo and Ransom added to their tallies, with Sala Fainga’a, Jacob Atkins and Todd Gleave all touched down, the sole consolation being Ben Gompels’ score.
Exeter Braves match with Harlequins and Leicester Tigers contest with Sale Jets were both postponed.