Premiership Rugby Cup: Exeter fight back to draw 22-22 with Newcastle
|Premiership Rugby Cup|
|Newcastle (12) 22|
|Tries: Kibirige 3 Cons: Connon 2 Pens: Connon|
|Exeter (7) 22|
|Tries: Bodilly 2, Short Cons: Skinner 2 Pens: Skinner|
Newcastle's ex-England Under-20s winger Zach Kibirige ran in a hat-trick but the Falcons had to settle for a draw in their first Premiership Cup tie with Exeter after letting slip a 22-10 lead.
The Falcons led 12-7 at the break as Kibirige crossed twice in response to the first of Max Bodilly's two tries.
Kibirige then completed his treble, only for Exeter to cross twice in the final 20 minutes at Kingston Park.
James Short scored before Bodilly's near full-length-of-the-field try.
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After full-back Bodilly had gathered a loose ball to gallop in from his own 22, Harvey Skinner kicked the conversion from the corner, to complete an eight-point haul and make it 22-22.
Fellow stand-off Brent Connon landed two conversions and a penalty for the hosts.
Newcastle were forced into two late changes, bringing in prop Logovi'i Mulipola for Jon Welsh, with Jack Payne replacing captain David Wilson on the bench.
And they had already made 13 alterations from last weekend's 23-20 Champions Cup win at home to Montpellier, while Exeter also made 13 changes to their European starting line-up from their narrow 29-25 defeat by Castres.
Round two fixtures
Friday 2 November: Bristol Bears v Gloucester (19:45 GMT), Sale v Saracens (20:00 GMT)
Saturday 3 November: Exeter v Bath (13:00 GMT), Leicester v Worcester (15:00 GMT)
Sunday 4 November: Harlequins v Newcastle (15:00 GMT), Wasps v Northampton (15:00 GMT)
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Newcastle: Arscott; Kibirige, Stevenson, Bettencourt, Radwan; Connon, Stuart; Davison, Socino, Mulipola, Davidson, Young, Burrows (capt), Marshall, Chick.
Replacements: Blamire, Lockwood, Payne, Cavubati, Collett, Nordli-Kelemeti, Swiel, Matavesi.
Exeter: Bodilly; O'Flaherty, Hendrickson, Hill, Woodburn; Skinner, Maunder; Low, Taione, Holmes, Salmon, van der Sluys, Caulfield, Lonsdale, Lawday.
Replacements: Innard, Keast, Street, Havili, Freeman, Snow, Morley, Short.