Gloucester ease past Falcons
November 16, 2013
Matthew Pewtner leaps to score for the Dragons © Getty Images
Gloucester showed no signs of battle-weariness after cruising to a 20-3 victory over fellow Premiership outfit Newcastle Falcons in the LV= Cup.
The Cherry and Whites came to Kingsholm for their third match in eight days, following last weekend's 33-6 reverse to Saints and a midweek friendly against Japan, but controlled from the outset against the Falcons. The home side had to wait only eight minutes for their opening try, before Freddie Burns and Rory Clegg exchanged penalties as Gloucester went in 10-3 up at the interval.
Burns started the second half with another successful penalty, and they only had to wait until the hour mark to have wrapped up proceedings as Mike Tindall crossed - with a Burns conversion putting the tie beyond all doubt. Newcastle struggled to get a rhythm going throughout and failed to add to Clegg's first-half penalty.
Newport Gwent Dragons scored a try in either half as they got their campaign back on track with a confident 20-8 victory over London Wasps at Rodney Parade.
Coming into the clash on the back of last week's 21-13 defeat to Scarlets the home side conceded an early try as Wasps flanker Matt Everard went over. But the Dragons responded immediately through Matthew Pewtner, whose try in the corner on the half-hour mark sent the hosts in 13-8 ahead at the interval.
The second half was a scrappy affair and the home crowd had to wait until the final ten minutes for the result to be put beyond all doubt, with Ashton Hewitt's late try securing a well-earned victory. Rhys Jones ended the encounter with a personal haul of eight points as Wasps failed to register a point in the second half.
Sale's experience paid off against the youthful enthusiasm of Harlequins as the Sharks avenged their defeat by Quins in last season's final with a 31-26 win.
Flankers Dave Seymour, James Gaskell, left-wing Rob Miller and replacement Danny Cipriani scored tries for the Sharks who had also lost 24-3 at The Stoop last month in the Aviva Premiership. Fly-half Nick Macleod kicked nine points for Sale with Cipriani also converting his own try.
Opposite number Ben Botica replied with 21 points for Harlequins - a try, two conversions and four penalites in a 100 per cent kicking performance - with winger Charlie Walker grabbing their other try.
Leicester made it two wins from two in the competition by overturning a 10-3 deficit with a strong second half performance, winning 21-18 against Worcester.
Worcester scored two early tries through Andy Symons and Jake Abbott but they failed to capitalise on their first half superiority by missing five kicks at goal, which would have given them a handy lead.
Two penalties and a drop-goal from Owen Williams had kept the Tigers in contention in the first half with the sin-binning of Sam Betty just before the interval being the turning point of the game. In his absence, Michael Noone put Leicester ahead with their opening try before a penalty try award sealed the Warriors' fate - with Christian Scotland-Williamson's last minute effort gaining Worcester a bonus point.
Cardiff Blues earned a hard-fought derby victory over regional rivals Ospreys at the Liberty Stadium.
Fly-half Simon Humberstone kicked 11 points in what was his first regional start while hooker Kristian Lacey and lock Macauley Cook supplied tries in each half to seal the 21-13 win, despite Blues being without 20 front-line players.
The Ospreys, who lost for the second week running after their reversal at Leicester, were stripped of most of their top players, although scrum-half Rhys Webb came on in the second half after spending six weeks out.
Sale's Mark Jennings takes the ball into contact on Friday night © Getty Images
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