Content with his side’s comfortable victory at Cammi Rugby Calvisano in Round 4 of the Amlin Challenge Cup, their second in as many weeks, Dean Richards is keen to continue the trend into the festive season.
A convincing 25-10 triumph in Italy has put Newcastle Falcons in the box-seat for a place in the quarter-finals with a Zach Kibirige double and a Rory Clegg touchdown sealing the spoils.
And following the contest, director of rugby Dean Richards was pleased with what he witnessed against the Super 10 outfit.
“I’m pleased with how things went out there, and it certainly breeds a bit of confidence going into the Exeter game,” said Richards.
“It’s great to see that the drills we are working on in training are now beginning to click, but we know next week will be a tough test for us.
“We’ve played some good rugby over the past two weeks, and we will look to do the same against the likes of Exeter and Wasps who we face over the Christmas period,” he added.
With individuals stepping up to the mark on the European scene in recent weeks, Richards admits explosive teenage winger Zach Kibirige has taken his chance.
Richards said: “Zach’s performance was one of the plus points today and he’s starting to come good for us. His try from 40 metres out was impressive and it just shows what a talent he is.
“It wasn’t just his display that pleased me, I thought Warren Fury at scrum-half and Richard Mayhew in the back-row had solid games too.”
Fly-half Phil Godman was forced off after picking up a knock, but the Falcons boss insists he was taken off as a precaution, saying: “Phil picked up a knock and we just took him off with next week in mind – the medical staff will examine him and we’ll take it from there.”
Newcastle had to play periods of the game a man light after Scott Lawson and Fraser McKenzie were sin-binned either side of the break. However, the North East club showed their class to remain in the ascendancy throughout the game.
“The decision to sin-bin Scott [Lawson] and Fraser [McKenzie] were fairly innocuous and you sometimes get those decisions in European rugby, but you get on with it and I thought we showed great team spirit to kick-on.”
The Falcons’ next home match is the Aviva Premiership clash with London Wasps on Friday 27 December with tickets selling fast but still available by calling 0871 226 6060 or click here to purchase online.