A very Goode home win


By Leipziger
February 1 2016

For the third home game in a row, the Falcons took an early lead before the opposition recovered and went ahead in the second half – before a late fightback secured victory. It’s never simple, but that’s why we love sport. Everyone thinks they know what’s going to happen, but until the final whistle, you never really know.   

Cometh the hour, cometh the big man as Andy Goode’s boot kicked the Falcons back into the game before a late try brought about a superb win.

 

All seemed to be going well yesterday for the first thirty-eight minutes. The Falcons weathered some early Harlequins possession before breaking and Scott Lawson scored the first try from a maul. Our 10-0 lead didn’t look in danger at all, though there was a cautious mood in the stands. Although there was plenty of kicking mixed in with the Falcons’ running game, the kicks were chased to gain an advantage from them, rather than them being as good as a turnover for the opposition.

 

Then it all seemed to go wrong. Just two minutes before half-time, Dave Ward went on a mazy run through a number of slack defenders, and once in the 22 Quins recycled well to put in Charlie Walker for a try. 10-7 at half-time.

 

Annoyance turned to horror as within seven minutes of the restart, the scoreline had spun by a full nineteen points in a ten-minute period thanks to two more Harlequins scores. The Falcons were 10-19 down and the buoyant atmosphere had fallen flat. At this point all kinds of negative thoughts come in – how many more could Quins have scored in the first half had their fast running not been hampered by numerous handling errors?

 

The Falcons stabilised the scoreline but struggled to make much headway into the game for a long time in the second half. An attacking lineout on the 22 was overthrown. Fortunately, inspiration arrived from the bench in the form of Andy ‘the big fella’ Goode in place of Craig Willis. Goode’s first penalty got us back into range for a losing bonus point, and then came a second.

 

Goode’s third kick levelled the scores at 19-19 with minutes to go and the Falcons had the crowd back onside. There was a real belief now that a fourth consecutive home win was imminent.

 

The Falcons went back on the attack and pounded the Quins’ line in the final five minutes, roared on by 6,500 screaming fans. Rare is the time I’ve heard it so loud in the South Stand. Harlequins defended each drive valiantly until finally a bundle of bodies fell over the line with the ball in Rob Vickers’ hands and the referee contacted his TMO. After the first replay Luke Pearce seemed to make up his mind after the first viewing, but checked once more and then signalled a try, sending the crowd potty. Goode’s conversion meant that the Falcons had secured at least a draw with about thirty seconds to go.

 

Quins won the ball from the kick-off – the stress just continues! – but conceded a penalty and, according to the announcer, the game was over! Actually it remained for the Falcons to send the ball out of play but that was a formality, and the result is that we are now three points ahead of London Irish in the relegation battle.

 

There are still twelve games to go and no doubt there will be many more twists and turns, but this win should give the Falcons a lot of confidence even when things don’t go our way in the remaining games. It would have been easy for things to go even more to pot after Quins’ third try but the Bath and Brive games will have helped to keep heads up. Lets go out and play with confidence for the rest of the season, play with ambition, and see where it takes us. It will win more games, I am certain.

pqs: qs:
A very Goode home win
Posted by: FalconsRugby.org.uk (IP Logged)
Date: 01/02/2016 20:46

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Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: aidanb (IP Logged)
Date: 01/02/2016 22:39

The learning point from the first Quinn's try is to ensure touch ahead of distance. We would have been 10 nil up at half time but for that error.

These are learning points which didn't bite us today but are in the bank for experience.

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: Cantabrian (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 08:01

The two points that this game hinged on for me were Craig willis' 38th minute penalty failing to find a safe touch and the arrival of Andy Goode. Both point to a much discussed topic on this board: on field leadership.

Will welch has been playing really well this season and would definitely be in my team at 6 but like Chris Robshaw he's not a leader. I think the lack of on field leadership is one of the causes of our mid match lapses making winning harder than it should be.

We look to have a much better chance of staying up than it seemed at times before Christmas, but I'd like to see the vastly experienced Ally Hogg being made captain for the rest of the season with Andy Goode hopefully soon able to come on for 30 minutes or even a full second half.

Two wise old heads who can read a game leading the team will surely help us survive a tough season.

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: Dick Godfrey (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 08:53

I can already hear the close of season chant when it is clear we are safe. "Goody is a Geordie.........."

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: A tramp abroad (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 09:58

Quote:
Cantabrian
The two points that this game hinged on for me were Craig willis' 38th minute penalty failing to find a safe touch and the arrival of Andy Goode. Both point to a much discussed topic on this board: on field leadership.
Will welch has been playing really well this season and would definitely be in my team at 6 but like Chris Robshaw he's not a leader. I think the lack of on field leadership is one of the causes of our mid match lapses making winning harder than it should be.

We look to have a much better chance of staying up than it seemed at times before Christmas, but I'd like to see the vastly experienced Ally Hogg being made captain for the rest of the season with Andy Goode hopefully soon able to come on for 30 minutes or even a full second half.

Two wise old heads who can read a game leading the team will surely help us survive a tough season.

Cantabrian, I agree with all of the above except the choice of Ally Hogg as captain. You are correct in that he has vast experience but he wouldn't be be in my first choice back row which is Welch, Latu and Wilson. I would give the captaincy to Nili Latu who has international experience in that role.

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: steve1888 (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 10:09

Agreed, Welch Wilson and Latu with Lawson or Latu as captain.

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: aidanb (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 10:13

I met Welch recently

I have always liked his game

I may be a bit star struck from that recent meeting but he is doing a good job as captain as far as i can see.

He has Hogg, Latu, Goode and others to chat to anyway so the club doesn't need the negative that comes with a change in skipper

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: nursepete (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 10:23

For me Welch to continue as captain - dont change a winning team and continue with Welch, Latu and Hogg.
Sundays game highlighted what a difference a Class Fly Half makes, and how a simple mistake can be capitalised on by the opposition just like the kick to touch on 38 minutes, which Quins exploited. Eradicate those mistakes and the nerves on 38 - 60 minutes will lessen in time.

Re: A very Goode home win
Posted by: lizard118 (IP Logged)
Date: 02/02/2016 12:27

I think his defensive efforts have been immense of late. I too wish WW to continue as captain. I'm a convert after initial doubts.
He has grown into the role over the last few seasons. His move to number 6 has been very positive. I think that's his best position. Latu is our best 7, and should stay at 7. I Would like to see Dan Temm whom I rate getting some gametime as he's our other natural 7 in case of injury to Latu.
With 9 more games on the bounce I think we're going to see some rotation to freshen things up.
Finally, did others see Sinoti running on the side? What a sight to behold! I hope he's ahead of schedule. Our game has more dynamism with Sinoti in it. I'd like to see Sinoti and Watson in the wings with Venditti at outside centre role. I think Venditti's power lends itself to that position.

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