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Report | Tigers fight for win over Falcons

Leicester Tigers secured a 27-5 away win over Newcastle Falcons on Saturday in Round 25 of the Gallagher Premiership season.

In the last away trip of the regular season, and a first on Tyneside in the league since April 2019, Tigers passed 1,000 points scored for the campaign when Nemani Nadolo scored in the opening quarter of an hour.

But the conversion and a penalty from George Ford were the only additions to the score as Tigers led 10-0 at the break and Falcons were first out of the blocks after the restart with a try from hooker George McGuigan.

After dominating possession for most of the game, Tigers finally pulled clear after a penalty from Ford as he converted further scores from Guy Porter and Freddie Steward.

Steve Borthwick brought Nadolo, George Martin and Nic Dolly into his starting line-up, with Cameron Henderson returning to the squad, though hooker Dolly left on a stretcher in the first half.

Tigers went into the game already guaranteed a home fixture in the semi-finals though still not assured of top spot with Saracens just four points behind while a group of clubs remained in the chase for top-four places with just two games remaining.

With Dean Richards in charge of the Falcons for a final home game, it was Ford who got the game started with Tigers in white and the Falcons in all black, and just 60 seconds elapsed before Chris Ashton found some space on the left but Adam Radwan made the tackle just as the wing reached for the corner.

The first scrum of the game brought a Tigers penalty and the chance for the first score as Nadolo wriggled and barged his way to the tryline to the right of the posts after strong work on the ball by Jasper Wiese, Harry Wells and skipper Ellis Genge.

Ford added the kick for a seven-point lead on 14 minutes.

Dolly stole Falcons ball on the floor at the restart and the hooker was back on the ball when Mateo Carreras misjudged a clearing kick before Wiese won a penalty on the floor near halfway.

Another whistle quickly followed and Ford kicked the visitors into a 10-point lead midway through the half.

Falcons’ first threat came on 28 minutes when Young latched on to loose ball and kicked ahead, but Ashton dotted down ahead of McGuigan as the ball bounced past the tryline.

Ford’s drop-out reached halfway but Falcons played back through a couple of phases before play was stopped for injury to Dolly as he contested breakdown ball and it was several minutes before the hooker left on a stretcher.

After viewing replays with the TMO, referee Anthony Woodthorpe yellow-carded Falcons prop Adam Brocklebank for his contact at the ruck.

Carries from Porter and then Wiese pushed play upfield again, but Tigers were denied a score when Ellis Genge pushed for the tryline but referee and TMO said they could not be certain of grounding.

When Ford played a penalty to the left, Tigers lost ball in the set-piece and Falcons broke out through Radwan on the touchline before the defensive cover smothered the threat.

It was a first real threat for the hosts but they closed the half with two pushes for the tryline after a break by flanker Josh Basham, only for the referee to rule they had been held up twice after checking TMO footage and the half came to a close with Tigers still 10 in front.

Basham earned a penalty in the opening moments of the second half, getting over Freddie Steward on the floor, but then missed out on a try when he followed a break by Young but was tackled within reach of the line by Ford and spilled ball.

Tigers were penalised at the five-metre scrum, though, and Falcons pushed for the line three times before hooker McGuigan made a decisive contribution to snatch his 15th try of the season.  

Joel Hodgson was off target with the conversion as Matt Scott and Tommy Reffell emerged from the Tigers bench.

Richard Wigglesworth had to react quickly to a Carreras chip towards the tryline and his colleagues arrived in numbers to recycle and clear.

A big drive from another defensive lineout brought a penalty and Borthwick sent on Joe Heyes and Jack van Poortvliet as the whistle blew again on halfway.

The lineout was a messy one but Wiese’s carry got Tigers going forward, then Ford chipped to the right where the ball came back off the corner flag and Carreras had to deflect it into touch.

Penalties started to mount up against the Falcons as Tigers kept ball tight in the right-hand corner  but, when the whistle went again, Ford called for the tee and his kick made it 13-5.

The fly-half then put a penalty from halfway into the right-hand corner and this time Tigers made it count, pushing for the line through the forwards and then Nadolo before playing out to the left and Porter showed some good footwork to go through a gap and score. The conversion by Ford made it 20-5 with 10 minutes remaining on the clock.

Cameron Henderson made his first appearance since Round 5 as he ran on to replace Harry Wells while Nephi Leatigaga reached his 50th appearance for the club as Genge made way.

Porter looked to be on his way to a second score as he took Scott’s offload but lost control in contact 10 metres out.

The centre, though, played a big part in a third try as, playing with advantage from a lineout drive, his crosskick found Steward on the right and the full-back dotted down.

Ford added a quick conversion to make it 27-5 with just a minute left to play.

Match Details

HT ScoreHalf Time Score

NEW 0-10 LEI

FT ScoreFull Time Score

NEW 5-27 LEI


Not available


Anthony Woodthorpe

Newcastle Falcons
Newcastle Falcons

Full Time

Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
Newcastle Falcons
Leicester Tigers

Match Stats

Newcastle Falcons
Leicester Tigers
Penalties Conceded
Yellow Cards
Red Cards
Tackles Won
147/171 86%
153/178 86%
Scrums Won
2/2 100%
6/7 86%
Lineouts Won
10/14 71%
15/17 88%

Player Stats

Newcastle Falcons
Leicester Tigers
Leicester Tigers
15Freddie Steward1T
14Chris Ashton
13Matias Moroni
12Guy Porter1T
11Nemani Nadolo1T
10George Ford3C2P
9Richard Wigglesworth
1Ellis Genge
2Nic Dolly
3Dan Cole
4Ollie Chessum
5Harry Wells
6George Martin
7Hanro Liebenberg
8Jasper Wiese
16Charlie Clare
17Nephi Leatigaga
18Joe Heyes
19Cameron Henderson
20Tommy Reffell
21Jack van Poortvliet
22Freddie Burns
23Matt Scott



Tigers win 27-5 at Newcastle Falcons with tries from Nadolo, Porter and Steward.

Ford quickly lands a perfect conversion to make it 27-5 to Tigers with 1min to go.

79min Freddie Steward scores in the corner from cross-kick by Porter. Lead is 25-5.

Ford converts a try by Porter to increase the lead to 20-5 on 71mins.

Guy Porter shows some good footwork to find the tryline after big work from the forwards on the right. Tigers' lead is 18-5 on 70mins

Penalty from Ford makes it 13-5 in Tigers' favour after big spell on the ball in the Falcons 22.


Hodgson well off target with conversion attempt. Tigers 10-5 Falcons on 51mins.

McGuigan scores for Falcons after a close-range penalty award. Tigers' lead cut to 10-5 on 50mins.


Trysaving tackle on the line by George Ford on Josh Basham.


The teams are back out, Falcons to get the second half started, Tigers 10-0 in front.


Tigers are 10-0 in front at half-time against Newcastle Falcons after a try by Nemani Nadolo and five points from the boot of George Ford.


McGuigan denied, referee says held up over the line with 90 seconds left in first half and Tigers still 10-0 in front.


Falcons held up on the line after a break by Basham. But play restarts with a penalty and they threaten the line again. TMO called into play...


Crowd is announced as 8,015 at Kingston Park.


Genge denied a score as referee reviews his push for the line and says he is not certain of grounding. Goalline drop-out.

Falcons prop Adam Brocklebank is yellow carded and Tigers have a penalty on their own 10m line. 


Nic Dolly is receiving treatment after being injured at the breakdown and leaves the pitch on a stretcher.


First break out by Falcons as Young chips ahead but Ashton races back to dot down behind his own tryline. It's a Tigers goalline drop-out.

Ford kicks the penalty to make it 10-0 in Tigers' favour on 21mins.


Wiese has been prominent on the ball but his work on the floor is just as good as he wins a penalty near halfway. Tigers have another penalty 25 metres out...

George Ford adds the conversion for a 7-0 lead.

14min First scrum brings a penalty for Tigers, they go to the right corner and Nemani Nadolo scores after carries from Wiese twice, Wells, Dolly and Genge. Tigers lead 5-0.


Ashton almost in to score in first minute but Radwan makes the tackle as he reaches out for the left-hand corner.

KICK-OFF | Newcastle Falcons v Leicester Tigers

It’s time for kick-off, with George Ford to get the game started. Tigers are playing right to left as we look from the main stand. Tigers in white, Falcons in black.


Teams are going through their warm-ups, there is some sunshine, we're getting ready for kick-off in Round 25 of the Gallagher Premiership season at Kingston Park.




Newcastle Falcons: 15 Alex Tait, 14 Adam Radwan, 13 Matias Orlando, 12 Luther Burrell, 11 Mateo Carreras, 10 Joel Hodgson, 9 Michael Young; 1 Adam Brocklebank, 2 George McGuigan, 3 Trevor Davison, 4 Greg Peterson, 5 Philip van der Walt, 6 Gary Graham, 7 Josh Basham, 8 Callum Chick (captain).

Replacements: 16 Jamie Blamire, 17 Logovi'i Mulipola, 18 Mark Tampin, 19 Freddie Lockwood, 20 Carl Fearns, 21 Cameron Nordli-Kelemeti, 22 Will Haydon-Wood, 23 Iwan Stephens.



Starting XV: 15 Freddie Steward [52], 14 Chris Ashton [9], 13 Matías Moroni [32], 12 Guy Porter [41], 11 Nemani Nadolo [34], 10 George Ford [125], 9 Richard Wigglesworth [35]; 1 Ellis Genge (c) [107], 2 Nic Dolly [22], 3 Dan Cole [286], 4 Ollie Chessum [27], 5 Harry Wells [152], 6 George Martin [35], 7 Hanro Liebenberg (vc) [55], 8 Jasper Wiese [41]

Replacements: 16 Charlie Clare [48], 17 Nephi Leatigaga [64], 18 Joe Heyes [98], 19 Cameron Henderson [19], 20 Tommy Reffell [74], 21 Jack van Poortvliet [45], 22 Freddie Burns [99], 23 Matt Scott [45]


MATCH PREVIEW | Newcastle Falcons v Leicester Tigers

Leicester legend Dean Richards is in charge of the Falcons for a final time on home ground following the announcement that he will step down as director of rugby this season.

In team news, Tigers head coach Steve Borthwick brings Nic Dolly, George Martin and Nemani Nadolo into his starting line-up, with Cameron Henderson returning to the squad.

Richards includes George McGuigan in the front row in the week which featured a call-up to the England training squad and there are three more ex-Tigers in Greg Peterson, Logovi’i Mulipola and Michael Young in the hosts’ squad.

Tigers second-rower Harry Wells said: “Newcastle are a dangerous team and we saw in the Premiership Cup that they can score points.

“It’s a massive week for them with Dean Richards’ last home game and they will want to give him a massive send-off so they will be emotional.”

Falcons head coach Dave Walder said: “Everyone’s excited to be playing against Leicester – a side who have had a dramatic turnaround over the last year or so. They’re at the top of the league and have a real clear identity of how they want to play the game under Steve Borthwick.

“Everyone knows what they’re going to bring, so it’s a case of trying to stop them, and then implementing our own style and strengths on to them.”

Tigers are in change colours of white, black and orange.

Referee is Mr Anthony Woodthorpe, in his 11th Premiership game in charge.



Wherever you are this afternoon, you can keep up to date with the Tigers action with Matchday Live on the Tigers App and website at www.leicestertigers.com.

We are LIVE from Kingston Park as Leicester Tigers face Newcastle Falcons in Round 25 of the Gallagher Premiership season. Kick-off is at 3.00pm.

Opposition Lineup

Starting XV

Alex Tait
Adam Radwan
Matias Orlando
Luther Burrell
Mateo Carreras
Joel Hodgson
Michael Young
Adam Brocklebank
George McGuigan
Trevor Davison
Greg Peterson
Philip van der Walt
Gary Graham
Josh Basham
Callum Chick


Jamie Blamire
Logovi'i Mulipola
Mark Tampin
Freddie Lockwood
Carl Fearns
Cameron Nordli-Kelemeti
Will Haydon-Wood
Iwan Stephens
posteamteam namepldwdlfadifftftatblbpts
Leicester Tigers
Leicester TigersLEI242004726452274885211394
Newcastle Falcons
Newcastle FalconsNEW246117436660-22457874434
Form Guide
Last Match
Lost to Northampton Saints 26-65
Past Meeting
Lost 5-27
Last Match
Past Meeting
Last Match
Beat Saracens 15-12
Past Meeting
Won 27-5

Matchday Live

Newcastle Falcons5
Newcastle Falcons
Leicester Tigers27
Leicester Tigers
Full Time