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Newcastle and Worcester face quick rematch

Wednesday 8th December 2021

11:00 am (GMT)

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Newcastle and Worcester face quick rematch

Billy Searle scoring a try for Worcester Warriors

Newcastle Falcons entertain Worcester Warriors for the second time in less than a fortnight at Kingston Park when they host their Gallagher Premiership rivals in Round 1 of the EPCR Challenge Cup on Friday night.

The clubs fought out a thrilling 24-24 draw in heavy snow in the Premiership on November 27, with Fin Smith converting Billy Searle’s 74th-minute try for a share of the spoils.

Other key facts:

  • This will be just the second meeting between Newcastle and Worcester in the Challenge Cup, after their semi-final clash back in 2007/08, which the Warriors won 31-16.
  • Newcastle have won nine of their last 11 home games in the Challenge Cup, although one of their two defeats in that run came in their most recent game at Kingston Park in the competition, a 33-20 defeat to Cardiff.
  • Worcester have lost their last three Challenge Cup fixtures, their longest such run in the competition since suffering seven straight defeats across the 2015/16 and 2016/17 seasons.
  • Newcastle carried the ball for 807 metres per game during their two Challenge Cup games last season. Only Connacht Rugby ran with the ball for more metres on average (950).
  • Worcester’s Beck Cutting found a teammate with each of his 11 lineout throws in the Challenge Cup last season. No hooker attempted more throws without missing at least one.

Key quotes:

Luther Burrell (Newcastle Falcons centre): “I really feel like we can target this competition and do well in it this season, because the players we’ve got are good enough.”

Jonathan Thomas (Worcester Warriors head coach): “What we did there last time is a positive reference point. But we have to press re-set and make sure that we earn the right to win the game.”



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Newcastle overcome Worcester in entertaining opener

Friday 10th December 2021

10:51 pm (GMT)

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Newcastle overcome Worcester in entertaining opener

Mike Brown scores for Newcastle Falcons

Newcastle Falcons triumphed 31-26 in a gripping clash with Worcester Warriors at Kingston Park as the EPCR Challenge Cup got under way on Friday night.

Newcastle scored inside 60 seconds in the Pool A encounter as Max Wright went over but were pegged back through a penalty try before Duhan Van Der Merwe put Worcester ahead.

Mike Brown crossed on 23 minutes to draw Newcastle level, but Harri Doel dotted down six minutes later to restore Worcester’s advantage.

A try from Newcastle hooker George McGuigan in the closing moments of the first half saw the two sides go into the break locked at 21-21, and the hosts then took the lead thanks to Ollie Lindsay-Haugue’s effort shortly after play resumed.

Worcester hit back once again through Will Chudley but Billy Searle was off target with the conversion, leaving Newcastle with a two-point lead heading into the closing stages.

A Joel Hodgson penalty on 76 minutes would cap the hosts’ victory as they held on to record a hard-fought victory.

Falcons don’t feature again in the EPCR Challenge Cup until they visit Biarritz Olympique on January 24, while Worcester host the TOP 14 outfit in Round 2 next weekend.

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