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Irish too good for Falcons
England fly-half returns from injury to inspire Irish win
Fly-half Shane Geraghty was at the heart of London Irish's convincing 19-0 win over Newcastle at the Madejski Stadium.
Geraghty saw his World Cup hopes ruined by a hamstring injury, but he returned with great effect to help the Exiles get a first win of the season against a poor Falcons side.
The 21-year-old England man provided all the creative flair that Irish had been without in their opening day defeat against Harlequins.
Geraghty split the Newcastle defence for the break that led to prop Faan Rautenbach scoring the first of Irish's two tries, while Paul Hodgson grabbed the second.
After Jeremy Staunton had kicked the first of his two penalties, Geraghty side-stepped his way through the Newcastle defence in the 18th minute.
Staunton was stopped just short of the line, but the Irish pack was at close hand and prop Rautenbach eventually got over for the opening try.
Scrum-half Hodgson's 32nd-minute try was an opportunist effort, as he grabbed the ball from the base of the scrum and kicked over the head of opposite number James Grindal before diving on the bouncing ball.
Staunton kicked just two of five attempts but that mattered little as Newcastle, without the likes of Jonny Wilkinson, Jamie Noon, Mathew Tait and Toby Flood struggled to muster any dangerous attacking moves.
Geraghty was brought off four minutes into the second half as part of director of rugby Brian Smith's plan to carefully manage the youngster's return from the injury he suffered at an England pre-World Cup training camp.
Any chance of the Falcons getting back into the game ended with centre Tom Dillon being sent to the sin-bin on 55 minutes for killing the ball in a ruck.
Staunton did kick that penalty to make it 19-0 and that was the end of the scoring as Irish wasted chances to extend their advantage further with some sloppy work.
They were easily good enough to get the victory though and Newcastle will need to show vast improvement to avoid another defeat.
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|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|
|Saturday 4th October|
|15:00||Harlequins vs London Welsh|
|15:00||London Irish vs Northampton|
|15:15||Gloucester vs Leicester|
|Sunday 5th October|
|14:00||Sale vs Wasps|
|15:00||Newcastle vs Exeter|
|Friday 10th October|
|19:45||Leicester vs Harlequins|
|Saturday 11th October|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Saracens vs Gloucester|
|15:00||Exeter vs London Irish|
|15:15||Northampton vs Sale|
|Sunday 12th October|
|14:00||Wasps vs Bath|
|Saturday 15th November|
|14:00||Sale vs London Irish|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Harlequins|
|15:00||Northampton vs Exeter|
|15:00||Leicester vs Saracens|
|15:00||Bath vs Newcastle|
|Sunday 16th November|
|14:00||Wasps vs London Welsh|
|Saturday 20th September|
|Bath 45 - 0 Leicester|
|Harlequins 26 - 23 Wasps|
|London Irish 32 - 36 Saracens|
|Sale 46 - 8 London Welsh|
|Friday 19th September|
|Gloucester 22 - 25 Exeter|
|Sunday 14th September|
|Newcastle 18 - 20 London Irish|
|Wasps 20 - 16 Northampton|
|Saturday 13th September|
|Exeter 20 - 24 Leicester|
|Gloucester 34 - 27 Sale Sharks|
|Bath 53 - 26 London Welsh|
|Friday 12th September|
|Harlequins 0 - 39 Saracens|
|Sunday 7th September|
|London Welsh 0 - 52 Exeter|
|Saturday 6th September|
|London Irish 15 - 20 Harlequins|
|Leicester 36 - 17 Newcastle|
|Sale Sharks 20 - 29 Bath|
|Saracens 34 - 28 Wasps|
|Friday 5th September|
|Northampton 53 - 6 Gloucester|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com