Sale go to third after Bristol win

The Sale Sharks produced a second-half assault to down Bristol 24-17 and move up to third position on the Guinness Premiership table on Friday.

The Sharks were without star loose forward Sebastien Chabal who injured his knee last week, but traveled with the side.

Bristol meanwhile recalled skipper Matt Salter in the place of Iain Grieve. Scott Linklater and Roy Winters were also drafted in to start but Mark Regan and Nathan Budgett warmed the bench.

Neither team was able to manage a single point – for only the fourth time since the Premiership started in 1997 – in a super tight opening 40 minutes at the Memorial Stadium.

Bristol fly-half Ed Barnes finally got the scoreboard ticking after 47 minutes with a penalty.

The Sharks bit straight back through flanker Jason White just three minutes later as the game appeared to be opening up. England veteran fly-half Charlie Hodgson added the conversion as Sale gained some cohesion.

But former Otago winger Neil Brew had other ideas and handed the hosts a surprise 10-7 lead 56 minutes into the game.

The try ignited the Sharks from their first-half slumber and they rocketed into the lead with two tries in ten minutes for a 24-10 lead and a semblance of control.

The first try came from flying fullback Ben Foden before flanker Chris Jones looked to have killed the game as a contest. Hodgson added to Bristol’s woes with a cheeky drop-goal to put further claims on a possible run in an England jersey following the uncertainly in the fly-half position after Jonny Wilkinson’s patchy form of late.

Bristol winger David Lemi managed a last minute consolation try for a losing bonus points but the Sharks had done enough to triumph 24-17 and soar up to third place.


Final Score Bristol 17-24 Sale Sharks




Bristol: L. Arscott, T. Arscott, Higgitt, Brew, Lemi, Barnes, Perry, Crompton, Linklater, Hobson, Winters, Hohneck, Salter, El Abd, Ward-Smith.
Replacements: Regan, Bracken, Budgett, Blowers, Thomas, Strange, Eves.


Sale: Foden, Cueto, Bell, Sevealai’i, Ripol, Hodgson, Wigglesworth, Sheridan, Bruno, Turner, I Fernandez Lobbe, Cox, White, C Jones, J Fernandez Lobbe.
Replacements: Briggs, Roberts, Cockbain, Lund, Cliff, McAlister, Kuadey.   

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