Premiership: Newcastle Falcons 10-35 Northampton Saints

Lions winger George North scored one of Northampton's four tries in their bonus point win at Newcastle
Lions winger North scored one of Northampton's four tries in their bonus point win at Newcastle
Newcastle (3) 10
Tries: Cato
Cons: Socino Pens: Socino
Northampton (28) 35
Tries: Hooley, A Waller, K Pisi, North
Pens: Hooley 3 Cons: Hooley 2, Wilson

Northampton ran in four tries at Kingston Park as winless Newcastle's run without a Premiership victory was extended to 19 matches.

Tries from Will Hooley, Alex Waller and Ken Pisi helped the defending champions to a 28-3 half-time lead, Juan Pablo Socino responding with a lone penalty.

Newcastle rallied in the second half with a converted try from Noah Cato, after quick thinking from Will Welch.

But Wales and Lions winger George North secured a bonus point for Saints.

Hooley weighed in with three penalties and two conversions for an 18-point haul as Northampton returned to winning ways following last weekend's 20-16 defeat by Wasps.

Northampton had suffered a blow in the build-up when Tom Wood was forced to withdraw with a bad back, Jon Fisher replacing him in the starting XV for his first league start for the Saints.

The Falcons' long winless run
Only two sides have now gone longer without a Premiership win in the competition's 27-year history - Rotherham and Worcester
The worst run of results in Premiership history is the 30 consecutive defeats run up by Rotherham Titans, which began in February 2001 and then stretched all the way through the 2003-04 season
Relegated Worcester went over a year without winning in the Premiership last season, enduring 22 straight defeats until they won at Newcastle on Easter Sunday.
Newcastle's most recent Premiership win was their 13-11 home victory against London Irish on 27 October 2013. They now face Wasps (away), Exeter (home) and London Welsh (away) knowing that, if they lose all three, they would match Worcester's 22 losses, with the prospect of a trip to Bath to follow.

But it did not take long for Jim Mallinder's Saints to make their mark.

Stand-off Hooley, starting in place of the injured Stephen Myler, crossed after four minutes, converting his own try.

Things then went from bad to worse for the Falcons when Ally Hogg was sent to the sin-bin moments later for a tackle off the ball, Hooley converting the resulting penalty.

Hooley added another penalty before, on 18 minutes, Waller finished off a sublime counter attack which started midway inside the Saints half.

Socino got the Falcons on the board but, after another Hooley penalty, Northampton again struck on the counter when winger Pisi touched down under the posts for try number three on 26 minutes, again converted.

Remarkably, it was another 44 minutes before there was another score when winger Cato scored the hosts' only try on 70 minutes, converted by Socino - some reward from a game in which they had enjoyed 59% of the possession.

But North crossed in the corner three minutes from time to seal Saints' return to winning ways, late replacement James Wilson adding the extras.

Newcastle director of rugby Dean Richards: "In the first 28 minutes we were dreadful. We sat down at half-time and said, 'Look, what chances have we got?' and everyone thought we might be able to get four tries, or get within a losing bonus point or even get the four points.

"I definitely think progress is being made and the quality of players coming through is promising. There's a lot of stardust in there but a lot of youth as well and we need to get that blend right."

Northampton director of rugby Jim Mallinder: "We played really well in the first 30 minutes. We could have maybe scored one or two more tries but a lot of the offloads were fantastic and we made some really good decisions.

"It was a little bit disappointing that we didn't go on and get the bonus try earlier but we stuck with it and thankfully got it at the end."

Newcastle Falcons: Hammersley; Cato, Powell, Socino, Tuilagi; Godman, Blair; Brookes, Lawson, Wilson; Green, Barrow; Furno, Welch (capt), Hogg.

Replacements: Tiesi for Godman (46), M Wilson for Furno (46), Fury for Blair (54), Sinoti for Tuilagi (70), Rogers for Brookes (79).

Not used: Hawkins, Tomaszczyk, Mayhew.

Sin bin: Hogg (7).

Northampton Saints: Foden; K Pisi, G Pisi, Burrell, North; Hooley, Fotuali'i; A Waller, Hartley (capt), Ma'afu; Lawes, Day; Clark, Fisher, Manoa.

Replacements: Craig for Lawes (46), Dowson for Clark (56), L Dickson for Fotuali'i (56), Waldouck for G Pisi (59), Corbisiero for A. Waller (62), Wilson for Hooley (70), McMillian for Hartley (70).

Not used: Denman.

Attendance: 5,057.

Referee: Greg Garner (RFU).

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