European Challenge Cup: Brive 13-9 Newcastle Falcons

Mark Wilson
Mark Wilson took the captaincy on his return for Falcons after injury
European Rugby Challenge Cup
Brive (13) 13
Tries: Bakaniceva Cons: Bezy Pens: Bezy 2
Newcastle Falcons (3) 9
Pens: Catterick 3

Newcastle's first match in Pool 1 of the Challenge Cup ended in defeat as they were beaten by French side Brive.

Malakai Bakaniceva's try was converted by Nicolas Bezy, who also added two penalties, as the hosts started well.

The Falcons' only first-half points came from a Tom Catterick penalty as they trailed 13-3 at half-time.

But the visitors improved after the break and two Catterick penalties closed the gap to only four points, but Brive held firm to start with a win.

The Falcons, who are bottom of the Premiership with four defeats from four matches, retained 11 players from their defeat at Worcester last weekend, while Mark Wilson was captain on his return to action after knee surgery.

Newcastle and Brive have been drawn in the same group on six occasions since 2005-06 and the hosts' better start to the match through Bakaniceva's score ultimately proved decisive in a game of few try-scoring chances.

Brive: Sola; Radikedike, Septar, Tuatara, Masilevu; Bezy, Duhalde; Lavergne, Acquier, Jgenti, Lebas, Steenkamp, Hireche (capt), Luafutu, Whetton.

Replacements: Ribes, Shvelidze, Tuncer, Marais, Briatte, Pejoine, Petre, Neisen.

Newcastle Falcons: Willis; Watson, Penny, C. Harris, Agulla; Catterick, Young; Rogers, McGuigan, Vea, Robinson, Thompson, Mayhew, Temm, Wilson (capt).

Replacements: Hawkins, B .Harris, Foster, Botha, Green, Tipuna, Marshall, Chick.

Attendance: 5,000

Referee: Leighton Hodges (Wales).

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