Welch: We can build on Philly learning curve

Sunday 17 September 2017

Newcastle Falcons captain Will Welch praised a ‘ruthless’ Saracens side after the European champions ended his team’s five-game unbeaten run in Saturday’s Aviva Premiership clash in Philadelphia.

Speaking after the 29-7 loss at Talen Energy Stadium, the flanker said: “The effort and endeavour from the boys was outstanding in very testing conditions, and I thought the pack were awesome.

“Saracens are a big side who are renowned for their good set-piece, and I felt we stood up to them in that department.

“Defensively we kept them to a single try and a late penalty try. The early try was sloppy and we’re disappointed with that, but on the whole we won a lot of collisions and our energy around the park was good.”

Battling away in the heat and humidity of America’s East coast, the skipper added: “It took a lot out of the players and I’ve never played in conditions like that, to be fair.

“You get used to the old single-digit weather up north and it’s a bit of an adjustment, but the boys worked their socks off.

“Unfortunately we came up short, and we made a few errors. We were a little bit inaccurate around the half-way line and Saracens are a ruthless team, so when you give them field position they’re good at taking it.”

Pleased overall by a positive week of team bonding and training, Welch added: “It has been a great experience and a good learning opportunity for the players, so in that sense if we got the chance to come over here again I’d personally be in favour of it.”

Newcastle Falcons’ next home game is the Aviva Premiership visit of London Irish on Friday September 29. Click here to buy tickets.

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