Premiership: Worcester 10-45 Newcastle – Falcons end winless run at Sixways

Newcastle ended an 11-game Premiership run without a win as they ran in six tries to leapfrog Worcester in the table with a bonus-point victory.

The Falcons led 21-5 at the break after tries from hooker George McGuigan, stand-off Brett Connon and wing Adam Radwan, the hosts having briefly responded with a Perry Humphreys try.

But Louis Schreuder, Trevor Davison and Jamie Blamire added second-half tries.

Warriors’ only response was their second try from skipper Ted Hill.

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Their second heaviest home defeat of the season, which Worcester boss Steve Diamond labelled “inexcusable” was the seventh time Worcester have shipped six tries or more in a game this season.

Dean Richards’ Falcons, who climbed two points above Worcester to 11th in the table, stretched their unbeaten run against the Warriors to five games after winning in the Premiership for the first time in 2022.

They had not won since the 15-14 victory at Exeter on 6 November – a winless run of one draw and then 10 straight league defeats.

And outside-half Connon, who was 100% accurate with the boot, ended with a personal best individual haul of 20 points.

An outbreak of Covid-19 in the Worcester camp had forced the cancellation of the previous week’s fixture at Gloucester. And Warriors were disrupted by having full-back Noah Heard stretchered off in the first minute after a head contact injury, to be replaced by try-scorer Humphreys – but Diamond refused to excuse his side’s woeful display.

Worcester boss Steve Diamond:

“We cannot use illness as an excuse because we trained reasonably well over the last few days. There are no excuses. We were completely off centre and did not compete in any area whatsoever.

“It was a performance that was totally out of character. It was wholly pathetic. Newcastle are a hard-working side and they put us to bed. It was embarrassing. I feel for the Worcester supporter base.

“We could not hold on to the ball or string two passes together. Our penalty count was probably the lowest of the season because we were never in the action. No one performed well, me included, and I put the onus on myself to get them back up.

“We were never at the races. I was going to give them next week off but I might change my mind about that now. It is inexcusable as professionals to perform like that.”

Newcastle director of rugby Dean Richards:

“I am delighted for the boys because they have played well in recent weeks against some top teams and not had much luck.

“We have been threatening to put in a performance like this. It gives us something to build on in the final months of the season.

“Adam Radwan’s try was all about adding strings to his bow but there were so many good performances. Josh Basham and Freddie Lockwood in the back row again showed how much they have developed.”

Worcester: Heward; Hearle, Morris, Beck, van der Merwe; Smith, Simpson; Sutherland, Annett, Judge, Batley, Kitchener, Hatherell, Hill (capt), Vailanu.

Replacements: Miller, Waller, McCallum, Clegg, Forsythe, Chudley, Searle, Humphreys.

Newcastle: Penny; Radwan, Wacokecoke, Burrell, Carreras; Connon, Schreuder; Brocklebank, McGuigan, Davison, Peterson, Robinson, Basham, Welch (capt), Lockwood.

Replacements: Blamire, Cooper, Tampin, Fuser, Farrar, Nordli-Kelemeti, Haydon-Wood, Stevenson.

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