Nottingham 12-19 Newcastle (RFU Championship) 24.01.20
Nottingham Rugby were beaten by top of the table Newcastle Falcons in a closely fought game at Lady Bay with the home side taking much credit from the way they played against the title favourites as well as a bonus point from losing by within seven points.
A fourth defeat in a row for the Green & Whites might sound painful especially as for the third successive match they kept their opponents under the 20 point margin but in reality the side will be happy with the way they played against a team that have now won 10 from 10 and lead the table by 11 clear points.
The visitors were first to score on 17 minutes when Maguire went over before Toby Flood converted and things got worse for Nottingham when Newcastle grabbed their second try of the night on 28 minutes when Adam Radwan went over. England International Flood kicked the following conversion wide and Nottingham might have felt agreived when the referee disallowed a try for illegally defending a maul.
Despite finishing the half on the back foot Newcastle went in at the break 0-12 up but with only 14 men on the pitch after Nagusa received a yellow card.
A good start to the second half by Nottingham saw David Williams reduce the deficit on 48 minutes racing down the left to touch down his 6th try of the season before Scanlon converted the extras.
A second yellow card for Newcastle occurred on 51 when Flood this time was booked but on 60 minutes it was the away side that stretched their lead again when Greg Peterson scored a try with Flood’s replacement kicker Tom Arscott converting to make it 7-19.
There was a late rally by Nottingham as Jack Spittle went over in space with just two minutes remaining but a missed kick and a lack of time ensured it would be more comfortable than the scoreline suggested for the Falcons who all be it were made to work by their hosts.
After the match Coach Neil Fowkes proud of his team stated “We’re happy that we got a point but we feel we could have got four. We put them under an immense amount of pressure and they didn’t take us lightly. They brought a full side and a lot of Premiership experience in there.”
“Credit to our boys, they stuck at it, they were brave, ambitious and they kept playing.”
Starting Team: Sean Scanlon, David Williams, Harry Strong, Will Simonds, Jack Spittle, Will Mellett, Murray McConnell, Aniseko Sio, Luke Cole, Oisin Heffernan, Llewelyn Jones, Danny Qualter, Seb Cecil, George Cox, Josh Poullet.
Replacements: Jake Farnworth, Tom Hill, Karl Garside, Oliver Chessum, Jordan Coughlan, Alex Dolly, Tom Benjamin, Ben Foley.
*Main image @NottinghamRugby a tough night against a top team but the Green and Whites did themselves proud.