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Breathtaking last-gasp Chick try for 14-man Newcastle stings Wasps

By PA

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A breathtaking last-gasp try from boyhood Newcastle fan Callum Chick gave 14-man Falcons a dramatic 18-14 win over Wasps at Kingston Park. In front of a bumper crowd, the game looked to have turned on its head when Tom Penny was sent off for striking the head of Wasps centre Jimmy Gopperth in the second half. A nervy 15 minutes ensued for Dean Richards’ side, who managed to come from behind late to snatch their second win of the season courtesy of Chick’s score and Brett Connon’s conversion.

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An astute box kick from scrum-half Louis Schreuder allowed Newcastle to take full advantage of the new 50:22 rule, handing them an attacking lineout deep in Wasps territory. And from the resulting set-piece, the Falcons worked the ball through the hands with some patient phases of play which resulted in No8 Carl Fearns touching down in the fifth minute.

After seeing almost none of the ball in the opening exchanges, Wasps finally found themselves with some territory in Newcastle’s half, moving the ball through the hands out wide to ex-Falcons winger Marcus Watson. The Wasps flyer burned his way down the touchline, kicking ahead to put him in a foot race with Will Haydon-Wood, who managed to scamper back to make a try-saving recovery after 15 minutes.

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In the 20th minute, Haydon-Wood made it 8-0 with a simple penalty. The Falcons were then reduced to 14 men after Schreuder was sent to the sin bin by referee Anthony Woodthorpe for not being 10 metres away following an infringement.

Shortly after Schreuder’s sin-binning, Wasps thought they had crashed over for their first try of the game through Tom Willis, only for it to be chalked off. While Haydon-Wood edged a penalty wide, a missed penalty from Wasps fly-half Jacob Umaga meant that the Falcons went into the break with an 8-0 lead.

 

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Wasps scored their first try after the breakthrough hooker Tom Cruse, who crashed over from a rolling maul. Umaga added the extras to make it a one-point game, but Kingston Park exploded into life in the 55th minute when flanker Chick intercepted a flat pass from Umaga and looked to be racing home for a coast to coast score. Some excellent cover defence from Wasps meant they somehow survived unscathed, and Penny was then sent off for striking the head of Gopperth at the base of a ruck to leave the Falcons down to 14 again.

After 63 minutes Wasps found themselves down to 14 following a high tackle from lock Vaea Fifita on centre Pete Lucock, with substitute Connon punishing the visitors to make it 11-7 with just over 15 minutes to play. Willis soon touched down for Wasps, with Umaga’s conversion giving them their first lead of the day, but the Falcons came roaring back after a thrilling passage of play which resulted in Chick touching down to give the hosts a dramatic late win.

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Breathtaking last-gasp Chick try for 14-man Newcastle stings Wasps

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