Gloucester too good for Falcons
PREMIERSHIP REPORT: Henry Purdy was the star of the show as Gloucester made it four Premiership wins on the spin with an impressive 29-7 victory at Newcastle Falcons on Friday.
The Cherry & Whites – fresh from downing European champions Saracens last time out – crossed for three first-half scores at Kingston Park through Andy Symons, Jeremy Thrush and man-of-the-match Purdy.
Mark Wilson pulled back a try for the Falcons just before the interval but Johan Ackermann's in-form visitors proved too strong on the night.
And despite Billy Twelvetrees’ yellow in the second half, Gloucester claimed a fourth try and a bonus point when Gareth Denman went over from close range.
Gloucester are now firmly in contention for the top four as we head into December while Dean Richards’ Falcons have now lost four in a row in the league following their bright start.
The Cherry & Whites have not won successive away games in the league since New Year 2015 but they struck first at Kingston Park, Purdy with the initial break before Symons barged over under the posts.
Twelvetrees added the extras before a clever lineout move saw Thrush curl off the front and beat two defenders for a fine finish.
Again Twelvetrees added the conversion before Purdy rounded out a fine first half with a score in the corner and Gloucester were 19-0 to the good.
But Wilson went over at the back of a rolling maul on the stroke of half time to give the Falcons hope.
Immediately on the resumption Twelvetrees added a penalty to stretch the lead before he saw yellow for delaying the ball at a ruck.
And while the Falcons threw on Toby Flood they could not puncture a fine Gloucester defence.
And up the other end the visitors got their bonus point when Tom Hudson went close before Denman barged over from close range.
Twelvetrees – now back on the field – again banged over the extras and Gloucester could celebrate another victory on the road.
Tries: Symons, Thrush, Purdy, Denman
Cons: Twelvetrees 3
Newcastle Falcons: 15 Simon Hammersley, 14 Alex Tait, 13 Belisario Agulla, 12 Juan Pablo Socino, 11 Sinoti Sinoti, 10 Joel Hodgson, 9 Sam Stuart, 8 Nili Latu, 7 Will Welch (captain), 6 Mark Wilson, 5 Sean Robinson, 4 Will Witty, 3 Jon Welsh, 2 Scott Lawson, 1 Rob Vickers.
Replacements: 16 Kyle Cooper, 17 Sami Mavinga, 18 Scott Wilson, 19 Calum Green, 20 Gary Graham, 21 Ruaridh Dawson, 22 Toby Flood, 23 Chris Harris.
Gloucester: 15 Tom Hudson, 14 Henry Purdy, 13 Andy Symons, 12 Billy Twelvetrees, 11 Ollie Thorley, 10 Billy Burns, 9 Willi Heinz (captain), 8 Ruan Ackermann, 7 Lewis Ludlow, 6 Jake Polledri, 5 Jeremy Thrush, 4 Tom Savage, 3 John Afoa, 2 James Hanson, 1 Josh Hohneck.
Replacements: 16 Richard Hibbard, 17 Paddy McAllister, 18 Gareth Denman, 19 Ed Slater, 20 Freddie Clarke, 21 Ben Vellacott, 22 Lloyd Evans, 23 Mark Atkinson.
Referee: JP Doyle
Assistant referees: Tim Wigglesworth, Peter Allan
TMO: Claire Hodnett