Vickerman calls for Falcons to up the attack

Falcons centre Rob Vickerman believes his Newcastle side has what it takes to attack the top half of the Guinness Premiership table, as they prepare to host Worcester Warriors at Kingston Park on Sunday (kick-off 3pm).

The Falcons come into the game in search of their fourth consecutive bonus point win, with England Sevens star Vickerman creating one of four tries in a memorable 27-16 win at Bath last weekend.

“If you look at the league table where we are now at sixth, the boys are actually disappointed that we’re not much higher than that,” said the 24-year-old, who has been one of Newcastle’s stand-out players since his summer move from Leeds.

“We’ve drawn against Sale, Leeds and Harlequins, and we know we had it within our grasp to win all three of those with the leads we had. Looking at the teams ahead of us, whilst we have respect for all of them I wouldn’t have said there was any one that we really feared.

“There is a massive drive and belief within this club to get us into that next group up the table, and the game down at Bath has hopefully started to get the supporters a bit more excited about what is possible here.

“My old coach at Leeds, Neil Back, used to say that you don’t look back at the league and see who performed well, you look back at the league and see who won it. That’s the mindset we have here now, and you have to aspire to be where Saracens are with six from six.”

Buoyed by the recent upturn in results, the Yorkshireman added: “There’s a bit of a smile on everyone’s face, which really helps in training and everybody is enjoying their rugby at the moment on the back of three wins.

“We’re enjoying each other’s company, and the banter around the camp is great. When you look at teams in the past who have won trophies and been successful, they all seem to have that camaraderie and team spirit. That’s something we definitely have in abundance here, and the results are hopefully starting to back that up.

“The danger with that, of course, is over-confidence, but nobody within this club is getting cocky at all even after a couple of wins. We’ve had results not go our way earlier in the season, we still have a lot of work to do as a side and we’re very humble as a group in getting on with that in training.

“We’ve been after that 60 or 70-minute performance for a few weeks now rather than the 30 or 40-minute one, and the message from the coaches this week has really been hammering that home.

“Despite the result at Bath there was still a lot more we could have done at times during the game, but there were also a lot of positives and we’re looking to build on those this weekend against Worcester. We’re a good enough team to keep this run going, and if we stick to what we know we can do then we can make it difficult for people playing against us.”

Having scored on his debut against Edinburgh at Kingston Park and then again in his next home outing versus Sale Sharks, Vickerman said: “It’s been very enjoyable so far this season, especially to have found some consistency in selection and a bit of form in recent weeks.

“I probably think of myself more as a creator of tries than a scorer, but it was nice to get over on my debut and again in the Sale game.”

Having used his fair share of bandages already during his short stint in the North-East, the former flanker joked: “I seem to be a bit of a pin-ball at the moment, getting hit by everyone, but that’s just the way I play and I wouldn’t want to remove that aspect of my game even if it does mean taking a few knocks here and there.

“Maybe it’s the old back rower in me, but I like to get stuck in and go for the physical stuff. If I have as many actions as possible in a game then it’s likely there will be more positive ones. A key thing that Alan Tait is drumming into me though is that I need to be more selective in my decision-making rather than just smashing ev

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