Premiership: Newcastle Falcons 24-24 Worcester Warriors – Honours even in rearranged game

Adam Radwan scores Newcastle's second try against Worcester
Adam Radwan marked his return from England duty with Newcastle’s second try
Newcastle (12) 24
Tries: McGuigan 2, Radwan, Cooper Cons: Hodgson 2
Worcester (10) 24
Tries: Beck, Hatherell, Searle Cons: Smith 3 Pen: Smith

Newcastle and Worcester drew their rearranged meeting after Billy Searle’s late try for the visitors.

Falcons had led 12-10 at the break after tries from George McGuigan and Adam Radwan as Ashley Beck kept Warriors in contention.

They led when Kyle Hatherell went over early in the second half before McGuigan’s second made it 17-17.

Newcastle looked on course to win when Kyle Cooper crossed but Searle replied with just four minutes to play.

The match was moved from Friday due to the impact of Storm Arwen in the north east of England.

But the two sides still had to contend with snow flurries and bitter temperatures on a tricky night at Kingston Park.

Moving the match to the following evening also meant referee Wayne Barnes was without the services of Craig Maxwell-Keys as his television match official as on-site production trucks were no longer available for the replays.

Newcastle also enlisted the services of non-playing members of their squad to help serve drinks behind the stadium bars due to unforeseen staff shortages.

Both sides were also forced into making changes to their original line-ups.

Worcester were without British & Irish Lions winger Duhan van der Merwe as he failed a late fitness test with a sore neck while Sam Stuart withdrew for Newcastle.

Once the match did get going, it was the hosts who started brighter.

McGuigan and Radwan crossed within five minutes of each other, the former under a rolling maul and the England winger with a finish from 30 metres back after a set line-out move.

But Warriors centre Beck charged down an attempted clearance just before the interval to bring his side within two points.

They then took the lead on 49 minutes when back row Hetherell powered over from close range following initial breaks from Ted Hill and Gareth Simpson.

McGuigan scored again in similar fashion to his first in the right corner and after a couple of delays for injuries on both sides midway through the half, it seemed set to finish 17-17.

But replacement prop Cooper scored Falcons’ fourth and what appeared to be match-winning try with seven minutes left as he took advantage of a quickly-taken penalty to finish.

However, Worcester’s response was almost immediate when Searle went over in the left corner and Fin Smith held his nerve to kick the touchline conversion.

Newcastle: Brown; Radwan, Wacokecoke, Lucock, Stevenson; Hodgson, Schreuder; Brocklebank, McGuigan, Davison, Peterson, Robinson, Van der Walt, Welch (capt), Fearns.

Replacements: Blamire, Cooper, Tampin, Chick, Graham, Nordli-Kelemeti, Haydon-Wood, Penny.

Worcester: Shillcock; Hearle, Venter (co-capt), Beck, Humphreys; Smith, Simpson; Waller, Baldwin, Tyack, Garvey, A Kitchener, Hatherell, Hill (co-capt), Vailanu.

Replacements: Annett, Thomas, Judge, Batley, Lewis, Chudley, Searle, Howe.

Referee: Wayne Barnes (RFU).


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