Harlequins 21-23 Newcastle Falcons, Twickenham Stoop
Tim Swiel kicked the decisive 72nd minute penalty as Newcastle Falcons completed a 21-23 victory over Harlequins in their Premiership Rugby Cup face-off at Twickenham Stoop.
The first 30 minutes of the game saw Demetri Catrakilis and Brett Connon exchange two penalties apiece as the scores were levelled 6-6 before Pedro Bettencourt Avila touched down before the break.
Connon added the extras as Newcastle Falcons had a seven point lead at the end of the first half. Catrakilis brought down the gap to four points but Ben Stevenson's try in the 51st minute stretched Newcastle's lead to 11 points.
Nevertheless, the home side remained in contention and even managed to take a one-point lead following tries from Lewis Boyce (56') and Alex Dombrandt (61') while Catrakilis kicked the extras on the second occasion.
The momentum once again swung towards the visitors with Swivel's 72nd minute penalty goal and Catrakilis had a chance to win it at the death for Quins but his penalty fell agonsingly short and bounced back of the post pads.
“We got ourselves fairly well in front but things stopped going our way towards the end, and we really had to grind it out," said Newcastle Falcons academy head coach James Ponton.
“Our bench played a big part, they helped shore up the scrum and we got some front-foot ball as a result of that in a really crucial part of the game.
“A lot of lads fronted up, for example I was really pleased with Andrew Davidson and Glen Young in the second row, and they’ve had a real big fortnight in this competition.”