The Falcons' new director of rugby kept a watching brief in the club's previous two Amlin Cup games but the former London Irish and South Africa assistant coach was in charge of preparations for today's cup tie at Kingston Park
And while he - and defence coach Mike Ford - will not have been entirely happy with the Falcons conceding their usual early soft try, they will be more than pleased with Newcastle's first-up tackling, competitiveness at the breakdown and the fact they scored four tries, three of them on the back of a powerful second-half display from the home forwards.
The win keeps alive the Falcons' mathematical chances of making it through to the knock-out stages but the Scarlets remain favourites to progress from the group, while Sale are effectively out of the running with no points from their three games.
Newcastle led 13-7 at half-time after Jimmy Gopperth kicked penalties either side of Nick Macleod's 12th-minute try for Sale, when the ball was hacked through and no one was at home to stop Macleod scoring and converting.
Gopperth spurned another kick at goal to find the corner and was rewarded with Mark Wilson being driven over for a 32nd-minute try and Gopperth converting for the half-time lead.
Johnny Leota's stint in the sin-bin for a spear tackle on Ryan Shortland proved marginally productive for Newcastle with Gopperth missing one long-range penalty and slotting another attempt for 16-7.
Ironically, Newcastle scored their second try just after Leota's return. Again Gopperth spurned a kick at goal to find the corner and sustained pressure ended with Rob Vickers being driven over in the 62nd minute and Gopperth's conversion made it 23-7.
There was no stopping the Falcons pack and they were totally dominant in the loose and it was no surprise when Tim Swinson crashed over from another forward drive and Gopperth converted, before getting on the end of a Wilson run for the final try which he also added the extras with five minutes left.
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