Premiership: Newcastle Falcons win 16-14 with late comeback at Northampton
|Northampton (7) 14|
|Tries: Reinach 2 Cons: Biggar 2|
|Newcastle (6) 16|
|Try: Wilson Con: Flood Pens: Flood 2 Connon|
Mark Wilson scored a converted 86th-minute try to lift Newcastle Falcons off the bottom of the Premiership with a 16-14 win at Northampton.
Two Toby Flood penalties put Newcastle ahead, but Cobus Reinach's score gave Saints a 7-6 lead at the break.
When the South African crossed again the hosts seemed to be cruising to victory at Franklin's Gardens.
Brett Connon's penalty gave Falcons hope, before Flood improved Wilson's dramatic late score to win it.
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There were few clear-cut chances for either side in the second half, as the hosts appeared to be well in control before Falcons pressed relentlessly for a dramatic turnaround.
Ahsee Tuala made a crucial tackle to deny Newcastle's Vereniki Goneva with time running out, but Wilson, returning from international duty with England, saw his try awarded by the Television Match Official before Flood won the game with his conversion.
Newcastle's win was their sixth in a row against Northampton in the league and meant a miserable end to England co-captain Dylan Hartley's 250th appearance for the club.
Falcons climb to 11th in the table - above Sale who travel to Bath on Sunday - while Northampton are ninth, just three points off the bottom.
Northampton Saints director of rugby Chris Boyd told BBC Radio Northampton:
"It's a bit of heartbreaker, isn't it? We need to look back on Monday and see what happened.
"We were in control of the game. Maybe we got a bit conservative and stopped playing. We made a few too many errors in critical areas.
"That compounded on us and at the end of the day we couldn't hold them out. It's a bitter pill to swallow."
Newcastle Falcons director of rugby Dean Richards:
"It was probably a robbery, if we're honest. We didn't play that well for the first 60 minutes. But we took our chance at the end.
"We said during the week, providing we're in with a shout with 10 minutes to go, we'll stand every chance of winning.
"Northampton are a good team. They missed a couple of opportunities and, if they had taken those, it could have been a different thing altogether."
Northampton Saints: Tuala; Kellaway, Dingwall, Francis, Naiyaravoro; Biggar, Reinach; Waller (co-capt), Hartley (co-capt), Hill; Ribbans, Lawes, Gibson, Ludlam, Harrison.
Replacements: Marshall, Van Wyk, Franks, Ratuniyarawa, Eadie, Mitchell, Burrell, Sleightholme.
Newcastle Falcons: Hammersley; Goneva, Harris, Williams, Sinoti; Flood (capt), Stuart; Lockwood, Cooper, Wilson; Green, Robinson, Wilson, Hardie, Nagusa.
Replacements: McGuigan, Brocklebank, Mulipola, Davidson, Graham, Takulua, Connon, Bettencourt.
Referee: Matthew Carley