Newcastle Falcons edge out Sale Sharks in thrilling victory

Sinoti Sinoti crossed for Newcastle's try
Sinoti Sinoti crossed for Newcastle's try
©Press Association

Newcastle Falcons 19-17 Sale Sharks, Kingston Park

Newcastle Falcons survived a late scare from Sale Sharks as they went on to win their opening game of the Aviva Premiership with a thrilling 19-17 victory at Kingston Park on Friday.

Replacement fly-half Dan Mugford had a golden chance to seal the game for the Sale Sharks but his missed penalty in the final minute allowed the Falcons to win the game by two points.

Mike Delany scored the opening points for Newcastle Falcons with an early penalty in the sixth minute which was negated by his counterpart AJ MacGinty in the 20th minute to level the score 3-3.

The game headed nowhere as both the teams failed to get a grip until wing Sinoti Sinoti scored the opening try which was converted by Delany as the Falcons headed into half-time with a 10-3 lead.

Sale bounced back immediately in the second half with centre Johnny Leota scoring the team's first try in the game and Mugford's conversion meant the difference between the teams were reduced to three points. However, Delany's double penalty in the 52nd and 55th minute meant the Falcons increased their lead to nine points.

Fullback Byron McGuigan raised the hopes of Sale Sharks with his 69th minute try which was converted by Mugford to bring the scoreline to 19-17.

Mugford's last minute penalty would have been enough for the Sale Sharks to go over the line but the 24-year-old sent it wide of the post to allow the Falcons a thrilling two-point win.

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Widely regarded as the most competitive rugby union league in the can only be the Gallagher Premiership.

12 teams compete in the league over a season, playing every team both home and away, before four move into the playoffs and one is relegated.

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