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Page last updated at 17:01 GMT, Saturday, 24 September 2011 18:01 UK

London Irish 46-29 Newcastle Falcons

London Irish (19) 46
Tries: Ojo, Joseph 2, Penalty
Conversions: Homer 4 Penalties: Homer 6
Newcastle (12) 29
Tries: Fearn, Helleur
Conversions: Gopperth, Catterick Penalties: Gopperth 5

London Irish's Nick Kennedy barges through the Newcastle defence
London Irish's Nick Kennedy barges through the Newcastle defence at the Madejski Stadium

Full-back Tom Homer kicked 26 points as London Irish inflicted a fourth successive Premiership defeat of the season on Newcastle.

Two Jimmy Gopperth penalties briefly had the Falcons 6-3 in front.

But that was the only time they led as Topsy Ojo's try and Homer's boot kept the Exiles ahead.

Jonathan Joseph scored twice either side of a penalty try to seal it for Irish, with Daz Fearn and Jamie Helleur grabbing consolations for Falcons.

Irish have now won two and lost two of their opening fixtures, with Homer producing a faultless display with the boot to land six penalties and four conversions.

He kicked the Exiles into a fourth-minute lead, but Gopperth was twice successful with the boot to put Newcastle ahead.

Their lead lasted only three minutes as Irish centre Steve Shingler and fly-half Daniel Bowden combined well to set up the chance for Ojo who, despite slipping on the way, went over for his third try of the season.

With Falcons captain James Hudson in the sin-bin, Homer and Gopperth twice exchanged penalties, before Homer's fourth penalty gave the hosts a 19-12 half-time lead.

Gopperth cut the deficit with another penalty after the restart as Falcons piled on the pressure, but Homer twice responded to give Irish a 10-point advantage.

And they effectively put the game out of Newcastle's reach when Joseph picked up a dropped pass inside his own half to race 70 metres to the line.

With Newcastle again down to 14 men after Will Chudley was sin-binned for offending at the breakdown, the home side were awarded a penalty try as the Falcons pack illegally halted their push for the line.

Fearn forced his way over for Newcastle's first try, but there was still time in a frantic finale for Joseph to race in for his second score to earn Irish a bonus point before Helleur had the final say.


London Irish: Homer, Ojo, Joseph, Shingler, Thompstone, Bowden, Allinson, Dermody, Paice, Halavatau, Kennedy, Garvey, Evans, Gray, Hala'ufia.

Replacements: Watson for Ojo (70), G. Armitage for Shingler (60), Hodgson for Allinson (60), George for Dermody (70), Buckland for Paice (60), Lahiff for Halavatau (39), Sandford for Garvey (21), Danaher for Gray (60).

Newcastle: Goosen, A. Tait, Eves, Helleur, Shortland, Gopperth, Pasqualin, Shiells, Graham, Wells, Hudson, Swinson, R. Mayhew, Welch, Hogg.

Replacements: Catterick for Goosen (34), Sheriffe for A. Tait (77), Chudley for Pasqualin (55), Fearn for Shiells (67), M. Mayhew for Graham (61), Hall for Wells (61), Townson for Hudson (77), Pennycook for R. Mayhew (61).

Sin Bin: Hudson (14), Catterick (63).

Att: 6,333.

Ref: David Rose (RFU).

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see also
Northampton 13-14 London Irish
17 Sep 11 |  English
Newcastle 26-27 Leicester
17 Sep 11 |  English
Rugby Union commentaries
14 Feb 13 |  Rugby Union

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