Having spent the summer helping his country qualify for the Rugby World Cup American lock Nick Civetta is keen to carry the momentum into Newcastle Falcons’ season.
The 27-year-old will be on the bench for both games of Saturday’s double header, which sees the Falcons taking on Championship sides Doncaster Knights (2pm) and Nottingham (4.30pm) at Kingston Park Stadium.
Starting his second campaign with Newcastle after joining from Italian side I Medicei this time last year, the New Yorker said: “Last season was basically a case of learning how to be a professional rugby player, and this season I’m keen to kick on from that base.
“I have only been back with the Falcons for around three weeks following the internationals over the summer but I’ve been impressed by the work the boys are putting in, and everyone looks in great shape.”
Keen to turn training gains into match practice, the eight-times-capped Eagle said: “Saturday’s double-header is a great idea because of the size of our squad, and it means everyone will get decent game time.
“I’m on the bench for both matches, and it should be really useful for the players and coaches to get some quality minutes on the field for pretty much all of the guys.”
Teams for Saturday’s games will be announced on Friday, with new signings set to feature including Maxime Mermoz, Toby Flood, Ryan Burrows, Josh Matavesi, Sami Mavinga, Cameron Cowell, Trevor Davison, Charlie Wilson, Adam Radwan and Sam Stuart.
Fit-again full-back Simon Hammersley is set to play a part in proceedings after recovering from a long-term knee injury, with Will Welch and Ally Hogg captaining the respective sides.
Non-season ticket holders can gain entry to the double header for £10 adults and £5 juniors, while season ticket members are entitled to free entry. For tickets call 0871 226 6060.
A packed day ends with a rugby league clash between Newcastle Thunder and Barrow Raiders at 7pm, which is also included in the ticket for the Falcons’ double header.