Richards praises nine-try Falcons

Sunday 22 November 2015

Dean Richards praised Newcastle Falcons' finishing ability following Sunday's nine-try show in beating Enisei-STM 55-7.

The European Challenge Cup triumph saw six of his side's tries scored by wings Marcus Watson and Zach Kibirige, the former helping himself to four while Kibirige dotted down once in each half.

Mark Wilson's hat-trick added to the tally, Newcastle's director of rugby saying: “It was lovely to see us playing that kind of rugby. The ability to change pace at full speed is not something I ever had as a player, but Marcus and Zach have got it in abundance."

Richards joked: “I think Marcus is a bit peeved Zach got man of the match with five minutes left in the game when he scored twice after the announcement, but both of them have a lot of ability and it is nice to have them back.

“Zach showed his finishing ability but it is not just down to strength or speed. It comes down to what you have got between your ears, and the determination to make it happen. He showed that in the try he scored for England Under 20s here a year or two ago when he went the length.

“We know he has got it, the issue has been getting him onto the pitch on a consistent basis. Now that he is back out there we are delighted with what he can do for us.”

Admitting his team were in somewhat of a no-win scenario against a side they were expected to beat heavily, the Falcons' boss said: “You have got to go out there, play the game and win.

“In some ways people might look at the opposition and say they expected you to beat them. If you don't score the tries people will point fingers, but the fact is we did score them. The boys came out on top and we ended with smiles on our faces.”

Crediting Sunday's Siberian visitors, he added: “We knew they were going to be big and physical. They just need exposure to top-flight rugby on a more regular basis. Some of their boys have played for Russia on the international sevens circuit, and they have some quite accomplished players.

“When you make the step up it is about speed of thought, interpreting what is unfolding in front of you and making decisions under pressure. Physically they have got everything you need – it is just that experience they are looking to add. To that end, being in the Challenge Cup will be really useful for them.”

Finding room for improvement ahead of next Saturday's Premiership to Sale Sharks, Richards said: “The nice thing is the boys were delighted with the win, but at the same time disappointed that we lost some shape and structure during the second half.

“You have got to understand these things happen when you are winning by so many points. I was just pleased that the boys played with so much endeavour, so much flair, and gave it their all right from the off.”

Click here for the full Falcons TV interview.

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