Richards delighted with unbeaten start

Saturday 5 December 2020

Director of rugby Dean Richards declared himself a happy man after Newcastle Falcons’ 27-17 victory at Wasps on Saturday – a result which continues their winning start to the Gallagher Premiership season.

The newly-promoted outfit have won their first three games back in the top flight, tries from Adam Radwan, Ben Stevenson and Marco Fuser seeing them past last season’s beaten finalists.

“I’m absolutely delighted with the three wins we’ve been able to put together,” said the Falcons boss.

“I’ve been around long enough to know that the bubble will burst at some point, but we’re hoping it won’t be for a while yet.

“We’ll come a cropper at some stage, I’m sure, but it’s all about aspirations for the boys now and really believing.”

Praising the mind-set of his troops after victories against three of last season’s top five, Richards added: “Full credit to the boys, because a lot of their chat in the changing room is about the fact that with a little bit more accuracy we could have had a bonus point out there today.

“I’m delighted with them, though. Yeah, there were one or two occasions where we maybe didn’t take our chances, but you can’t complain after the three results we’ve had.

“It could have been more comfortable for us today but you have to take your hat off to Wasps for the way they came back at us. They’ll be disappointed because they left a couple of tries out there, too, but I think on the whole we were worth our win.”

Having withstood a second-half rally from the Midlanders, Richards said: “We got a few bumps and bruises and a few boys tired during the second half – it became a little bit disjointed as a result, but I thought the boys played well.

“They were totally committed, as they have been all season, and they really want to play for one another.

“The team spirit among the group is absolutely outstanding, which is a good starting point, and we’ve got a lot of quality in there as well.

“It’s a nice mixture of younger academy boys and some older heads, and I’m just looking forward to seeing what this group can achieve together.”

Hosting Cardiff Blues on Friday before travelling to Castres the Friday after, Richards said: “We move into Europe now, and there will be a lot of boys who will be given some game time.

“Having an unchanged starting team for three games in a row isn’t something you can really keep up at this level – in fact, it’s incredibly unusual – and we’ve got a lot of boys who deserve a chance during the Challenge Cup window.”

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