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Newcastle

  • Mayerhofler, Visser,
    Penalty goals: Burke (3),
    Conversions: Burke,
21 - 26

Lon' Irish

  • Flutey,
    Penalty goals: Everitt (7),

Visser try not enough

By Ben Blackmore  

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Guinness Premiership, Kingston Park, Friday September 22, 8pm

Prolific young Dutch winger Tim Visser scored his third try in as many games for Newcastle, but it was not enough to prevent the Falcons running out 26-21 losers against London Irish.

Exiles boss Brian Smith introduced Barry Everitt for the Kingston Park encounter, and it proved a masterstroke as the metronomic stand-off converted seven penalties.

Newcastle outscored the visitors two tries to one - Mark Mayerhofler grabbing a late score to give them hope after Riki Flutey levelled Visser's opener, but once again indiscipline cost the Falcons dear.

Everitt showed why he is London Irish's record points-scorer with a faultless display, helping them to join Northampton on nine points in the Premiership table.

Driving rain always threatened to ruin the game as a spectacle, and so it proved as penalties punctured Newcastle's display.

David Wilson was the prime transgressor, pushing referee Martin Fox's patience too far and earning a yellow card for going over the ball.

Everitt was always on hand to punish the Falcons, and by contrast Matt Burke failed to capitalise on the Exiles' mistakes.

Visser got the hosts off to the perfect start, pouncing on Toby Flood's teasing crossfield kick to race past the committed Topsy Ojo.

It was a deserved try after earlier near-misses from both he and Mayerhofler, but John Fletcher's men failed to develop their momentum.

Instead, the Falcons' forwards were forced onto the back foot, before quick ball allowed Riki Flutey to dart over.

Penalties continued to arrive with alarming frequency for offside or spoiling tactics, each time Everitt kept the scoreboard ticking over.

A rare Burke three-pointer made it 20-13 to the Irish, and it could have been better as the ever-dangerous Visser went close again.

Following two more penalties Mayerhofler bundled over for 23-21, but Burke was unable to restore parity as his conversion drifted left.

Instead it was Everitt who nailed the final kick of the match, securing a crucial win for last season's play-off semi-finalists.

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