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Gloucester back on top
Newcastle beaten on home soil
Iain Balshaw and Olivier Azam scored tries to help Gloucester back to the top of the Guinness Premiership with a 20-13 victory over Newcastle Falcons at Kingston Park.
The Falcons' points came through Geoff Parling's 21st minute converted try and two Jonny Wilkinson penalties, although Wilkinson also missed two place kicks, including a simple chance in the second-half.
Fly-half Wilkinson opened the scoring with an early penalty after Gloucester were penalised for straying off-side.
But it was Gloucester who got the game's first try in the eighth minute when Marco Bortolami's overhead pass set-up a simple score for Balshaw.
Ryan Lamb landed the conversion for a 7-3 lead before Wilkinson was just short with a 55-metre penalty attempt.
The hosts moved ahead when No.8 Russell Winter's surge created the space for Parling to cross in the corner. Wilkinson's conversion put the Falcons 10-7 in front.
Referee Martin Fox then yellow-carded Newcastle flanker Ben Woods for a deliberate knock-on as he attempted to claim an interception. It was a marginal offence and he also gave a penalty, but from the kick to the corner Azam overthrew the line-out and the chance was wasted.
Hooker Azam made amends when he touched down for Gloucester's second try in the 30th minute following a catch-and-drive lineout move. Lamb's conversion took Gloucester to the break 14-10 ahead.
That was extended to 17-10 with Lamb's 53rd-minute penalty before his opposite number Wilkinson was off-target with a straightforward penalty attempt.
With 10 minutes left, Wilkinson did kick a 40-metre effort to make it 17-13, but Lamb knocked one over from in front of the posts three minutes later to restore a seven-point margin of victory.
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Aviva Premiership Table
|Friday 5th September|
|19:45||Northampton vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 6th September|
|14:00||Sale vs Bath|
|14:00||Saracens vs Wasps|
|15:00||Leicester vs Newcastle|
|16:30||London Irish vs Harlequins|
|Sunday 7th September|
|14:00||London Welsh vs Exeter|
|Friday 12th September|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Saracens|
|Saturday 13th September|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Sale|
|15:00||Bath vs London Welsh|
|15:15||Exeter vs Leicester|
|Sunday 14th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Northampton|
|15:00||Newcastle vs London Irish|
|Friday 19th September|
|19:45||Gloucester vs Exeter|
|Saturday 20th September|
|14:00||Sale vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Wasps|
|15:00||London Irish vs Saracens|
|15:15||Bath vs Leicester|
|Sunday 21st September|
|14:00||Newcastle vs Northampton|
|Friday 26th September|
|19:45||London Welsh vs Gloucester|
|Saturday 27th September|
|15:00||Leicester vs London Irish|
|15:00||Saracens vs Sale|
|15:15||Northampton vs Bath|
|Sunday 28th September|
|14:00||Wasps vs Newcastle|
|14:00||Exeter vs Harlequins|
|Friday 3rd October|
|19:45||Bath vs Saracens|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com