Gallagher Premiership Saturday wrap: Victories for Exeter, Saracens, Bath and Newcastle
Last Updated: 15/09/18 7:45pm
Once again, a Gallagher Premiership Saturday delivered points galore as Exeter Chiefs, Saracens, Bath Rugby and Newcastle Falcons all secured Round 3 victories.
After Gloucester's 35-13 win over Bristol Bears on Friday night, the competition continued at pace and tries were the order of the afternoon.
The final Round 3 fixture will see Wasps host Leicester Tigers at the Ricoh Arena on Sunday afternoon. Before then, take a look back through all four Saturday fixtures below.
Exeter Chiefs 35-18 Sale Sharks
Rob Baxter's Exeter Chiefs maintained their exemplary start to the new season with a third bonus-point victory in succession and sit at the top of the Gallagher Premiership table.
However, their latest success was far from straightforward as Sale battled hard throughout and were unlucky to come away from Sandy Park with nothing.
That said, the Chiefs focused and overcame the disruption of losing both Matt Kvesic and Sam Simmonds to illness before kick-off.
Last season's runners-up put five tries on the board, including one for new signing Alex Cuthbert, and that pushes their tally out to 17 at the start of their new campaign.
Joe Simmonds and Gareth Steenson shared the duties off the tee with the former converting three of their five-pointers and the latter two.
Marland Yarde and Bryn Evans both crossed for Sale with AJ MacGinty adding two penalties and a single conversion.
Harlequins 32-37 Bath Rugby
Joe Cokanasiga scored two tries as Bath finished on the right side of an entertaining 69-point encounter at the Twickenham Stoop.
The wing, who joined from London Irish in the off-season, scored either side of half-time, while No 8 Zach Mercer also added a double of his own.
However, Todd Blackadder's men were made to work by their hosts late on as Joe Marler and Charlie Mulchrone scored to give the home fans hope of a comeback.
Their respective tries added to earlier scores from Danny Care and Joe Marchant but Bath kept their composure to see-out the game and, as a result, gained their first win of the new domestic season.
Northampton Saints 27-38 Saracens
Saracens overcame a slow start to score five tries and secure a 38-27 victory over Northampton at Franklin's Gardens.
In a game which swung back and forth, two tries in three minutes from David Strettle late on secured the bonus-point win for Mark McCall's men.
The visitors claimed the spoils despite seeing Jamie George and Billy Vunipola yellow-carded in either half as Alex Lewington crossed for a double with Ben Spencer also on the scoreboard.
The Saints' tries came via Piers Francis, Dylan Hartley and Ben Franks. Fly-half Dan Biggar added all three conversions and added a further two penalties but it wasn't quite enough to get the better of their rivals.
Worcester Warriors 20-23 Newcastle Falcons
Toby Flood's reliable boot proved to be the difference at Sixways as he finished the afternoon with a 13-point haul and Newcastle Falcons were another side to gain their first W of the new season.
Dean Richards' men had raced into a 14-0 lead before Worcester clawed the match back and the Falcons went into the break with just 13 men on the field.
George McGuigan and Johnny Williams were both handed yellow cards and a penalty try to the Warriors cut the difference to four points, 14-10, at the interval.
The cat and mouse nature continued throughout the second 40 minutes. Flood stretched Falcons' lead out to 17-10 before Duncan Weir's try and conversion levelled proceedings.
Flood, again, provided a three-point cushion before Pennell stepped up to the mark with a long-range effort of his own.
In the end, a third Flood penalty, eight minutes from time, proved to be decisive.