Newcastle Falcons boss Dean Richards was left frustrated after seeing his side edge out London Scottish 12-9 at Kingston Park on Sunday.
Victory over the Londoners maintained the Falcons’ unbeaten run, but the Newcastle chief insists his troops must improve as the business end of the season draws ever closer.
I don’t think we handled them [London Scottish] particularly well,
“It’s interesting because you had two sides out there who shared 11 tries in the game earlier in the season, but this time there wasn’t a try scored – something wasn’t quite right tonight,” Richards said.
Four penalties from the boot of Joel Hodgson, who had a solid outing for the northeasterners, secured another four points for the Falcons.
Holding a 16 point advantage over second place Nottingham, albeit with third place Bedford Blues still to play Rotherham Titans on Boxing Day, Richards’ men still remain in pole position.
Experienced boss Richards can rest easy over the festive period safe in the knowledge that the 100 per cent record is still intact. However, Richards believes the Falcons have areas to improve on ahead of the New Year’s Day showdown at Doncaster Knights.
He said: “We lacked a bit of game control and we didn’t quite agree with every refereeing decision and there may have been a few preconceptions, in fact I’m pretty sure there was.
“It just didn’t happen out on the pitch – you want to play good rugby but we didn’t play at the right times in the right places.
“That was frustrating not just for me, but for the other coaches too and when the players came off the pitch afterwards they were not happy either.”