Gopperth's late leveller keeps spirited Newcastle in contention

Newcastle 16 Worcester 16

Kingston Park

According to Alan Tait before kick-off it was not so much a "must-win" game for Newcastle as a "should-win" encounter. As it was, Newcastle's head coach was happy enough when the scrap between the teams occupying the bottom two places in the Aviva Premiership finished without a winner on Tyneside last night.

With four minutes remaining, Tait's Falcons were trailing 16-9 and staring at an eight-point gap opening up between themselves and Worcester at the foot of the table. But then Michael Mayhew, Newcastle's replacement hooker, burrowed over from close range, and Jimmy Gopperth landed the conversion. All of which, after the visitors had looked all but home and hosed, left the scores on the night all square.

The contest had quickly settled into a tight struggle for field position, the respective outside halves invariably putting boot to ball whenever it came their way. Inevitably, it also became a duel between the No 10s on the goal-kicking front, Gopperth and Joe Carlisle landing a pair apiece to leave the scorers tied at 6-6 at the end of opening quarter.

It was tall, upright figure of Carlisle, preferred as a starting fly-half for the Warriors to the veteran Andy Goode, who made the first decisive break, the 23-year-old taking a feed from a midfield scrum in the 27th minute and paving the way for sometime England scrum-half Shaun Perry to scamper through on the left. Carlisle added the extras, giving the Warriors a 13-6 advantage at the interval.

Immediately after the break Newcastle went into kitchen sink mode, but their only reward was another penalty by Gopperth. The frustration continued for the Falcons when Corne Uys spilled his pass with the try-line in sight. It looked a costly error when Goode emerged from the bench to bang over a penalty, but then Mayhew and Gopperth came to the rescue for the Falcons, leaving drawn expressions all round.

Newcastle Goosen, A Tait, Uys, Helleur (Eves, 63), Sheriffe, Gopperth, Pasqualin, Shiells (Wells, 55), Graham (M Mayhew, 73), Murray, Hudson, Van der Heijden (Swinson, 51), Wilson, Welch (Pennycook, 66), Hogg. Replacements not used Hall, Pilgrim, Manning.

Worcester Classens, Garvey, Grove, Rasmussen, Benjamin, Carlisle (Goode, 63), Perry, Mullan, Lutui (Shervington, 70), Taumoepeau, Percival, Gillies, Best, Betty, C. Jones. Replacements Porter, Shervington, Tomaszczyk, Balding, Kvesic, Frost, Pennell.

Referee W Barnes (RFU).


Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk