DEAN RICHARDS bemoaned Newcastle Falcons’ defensive deficiencies as they crashed to a resounding 40-10 defeat at Wasps.

Falcons’ impressive cup form went out of the window as they returned to Aviva Premiership duty, with Wasps running in six tries as Falcons were comprehensively outplayed.

Falcons’ only try came from lock Sean Robinson, and Richards could offer no excuses as his side was repeatedly carved open.

“We didn't play with enough accuracy or respect the ball as much as we should have done,” admitted the Falcons director of rugby. “When you have the likes of Kyle Eastmond and Christian Wade you have plenty of pace, and in the first half they caused us plenty of problems.

“Our lack of defensive structure with players stepping out of the line also didn't help, and hopefully we'll not play that badly twice.

“They had a lot more composure in their game - on paper they looked a little bit stronger than us and it showed. We'll learn from it, take what we can and start looking at Friday's game (against Gloucester).”

Wasps scored three early tries to surge into a 19-3 lead in the first 20 minutes, then survived a poor second quarter to secure the points with three unanswered tries in the second half.

And with their early-season injury crisis now behind them - Kyle Eastmond, Gaby Lovobalavu and Kearnan Myall were the latest returnees - this result also served notice that last season's Premiership finalists are on the move.

Wasps made the best possible start by scoring three tries during a scintillating opening. Flying winger Christian Wade was on the board in the second minute with a try which former Falcon Jimmy Gopperth converted, after the former Falcon had previously created the opportunity with a sublime offload.

And after Toby Flood's penalty got the visitors underway, Willie le Roux's arcing break left Wade with the simplest of finishes for his second score.

The third try was a brilliant solo effort from Eastmond, who the home support would have been delighted to see playing his first game since February.

The England centre stepped his way past Newcastle's defence before accelerating 30 metres to the corner for a try which Gopperth converted.

Falcons then began to take control of the game, as Wasps were guilty of over-ambition and missing too many tackles.

Only Wade's last-ditch intervention prevented Gary Graham going over, but the visitors did soon claim an opening try, created by Josh Matavesi's powerful break and finished by Robinson.

Eastmond's brave tackle then denied the deadly Sinoti Sinoti in the corner and sent the hosts into the interval with a nine-point advantage, which James Haskell's converted try immediately after the restart extended by a further seven.

The hosts looked to have added a fifth score, only for the TMO to correctly rule Ashley Johnson's simple draw-and-give scoring pass to Le Roux forward.

However, the score did soon arrive through Fijian replacement Lovobalavu, who got on the end of a 50-metre break from Joe Simpson to record his first Premiership try.

Chris Harris' midfield break then nearly sent Juan-Pablo Socino over for the Falcons, before the hosts collected a sixth try through a scorching long-range finish from wing Josh Bassett.

Gopperth's conversion took Wasps to the 40-point mark and rewarded the home side's increased control after the break.