Wilson happy with half-century against Grenoble

Sunday 23 October 2016

Mark Wilson declared himself largely satisfied by Newcastle Falcons’ efforts following Sunday’s 50-7 European Challenge Cup victory over Grenoble at Kingston Park Stadium.

The Falcons ran in eight tries to reignite their quarter-final hopes, Wilson grabbing one of them in a power-packed first half as they led 28-0 at the interval.

The flanker said: “Apart from the one try that they scored at the end it was a good day at the office for us.

“We stuck exactly to what we had talked about, we played at a high tempo and ran them off the park, especially in the first half.

“We missed a couple of chances but, with the way we are trying to attack, it will come. Once we have had a team under the cosh for that long it is inevitable they will concede points, and even if there are a couple of issues we will look at in terms of accuracy, we were spot-on in terms of our energy and tempo.”

Facing home-and-away dates with Lyon in the middle two of their six group games, Wilson said: “The pool is wide open.

“Fair enough we had a tough start at Ospreys, but we will back ourselves against them up here and hope to win enough games in between to make that one count. We have plenty to play for in this competition.”

Happy that his side managed to maintain their attacking impetus longer than their last home outing, he added: “It was great to have the bonus point by half-time but we said we didn’t want a repeat of what happened against Bristol, where we took our foot off the gas. The first 10 minutes of the second half were always going to be important, and that’s the way it worked out for us. It wasn’t a perfect performance, but there was a lot of really good stuff in there.

“Grenoble are a big pack but I think we bat above our average in that area. We talk a lot about our unity, our pack mentality, and today was a great mark of we can do as a forward unit. We scored a number of tries through drives or close-quarter work, and the origins of a lot of the other tries we scored were also from the tight phases.

“Our replacements when they came on kept the energy really high, and that was another big plus point. It is a squad game these days, and that is our approach to it. Some of the younger lads really stepped up, the likes of Callum Chick having a very tidy game at the base of the scrum. Joel Hodgson at fly-half are stepping up to the plate, and we feel like are in a decent place at the moment.”

With Wasps away next up in the Premiership on Sunday, Wilson insisted it will be a no-fear mind-set when they travel to Coventry.

He said: “If we show what we showed today and add in some of the things we have talked about as a group, we can go down there and have a real good crack. I want us to have the confidence to go there and have a go.”

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