Sale Sharks scrape past Cardiff Blues

Sale Sharks bounced from their humbling against Toulouse last week with a close shave 27-26  win over Cardiff Blues at Edgeley Park, Sale in England on Friday.


Cardiff Blues showed the first sign of momentum as they went out to a 3-9 lead but Sale Sharks hit back and took the lead after Koyamailbole scored a try which Charlie Hodgson converted after a lengthy TMO referral.


A short time after Andy Powell was sent to the bin and Sale immediately capitalised on the extra numbers and scored another converted try through Schofield and Hodgson.


Sale Sharks then went into the break with the lead at 17-9.


Even though Cardiff Blues were determined to get back into the match it was Sale Sharks who scored the first try of the second half as Gaskell broke free and scored. Hodgson then converted the try and the Sharks had a comfortable 24-9 lead.


When Andy Powell came back on he made up for his time in the bin with a try of his own which looked a little like a training ground move as he drove for the line with no real opposition. Blair converted the try and the Blues were back in the match.


Sale Sharks were however looking for the bonus point for the fourth try so they kept attacking the Blues.


Cardiff’s defence held out the Sharks admirably and with 10 minutes to go as Sale could find no way through Charlie Hodgson banged over a drop goal which proved later to be crucial.


Worryingly for Sale Sharks and England prop Andy Sheridan’s shoulder appeared to pop out during a collapsed scrum.


He received some attention on the field and then left – surely to get to the hospital to have his shoulder put back in.


A late burst Leigh Halfpenny looked to have yielded a try but the assistant ref ruled that his foot was in touch and a line out was held.


 Cardiff pounced on a loose ball from the line and Rob Sowden-Taylor scored try which was converted to make the score 27-26 with a minute remaining.


Sale Sharks set up a scrum and wound the clock down to secure the victory in which James Gaskell won man of the match.

Final Score Sale Sharks 27 (17) Cardiff Blues 26 (9)


Sale Sharks
Tries – Koyamailbole, Schofield, Gaskell
Penalties – Hodgson
Conversions – Hodgson 3
Drop G –  Hodgson

Cardiff Blues
Tries – Powell, Sowden-Taylor
Penalties – Blair 3, Halfpenny
Conversions – Blair 2
Drop G –
Cards – Powell (yellow 32)

Referee: Christophe Berdos


Sale Sharks: N MacLeod, M Cueto, A Tuilagi, L Thomas, B Cohen, C Hodgson, D Peel, A Sheridan, M Jones, E Lewis-Roberts, J Gaskell, D Schofield [capt], C Fearns, D Seymour, S Koyamaibole

Replacements: N Briggs, G Kerr, J Forster, S Cox, L Abraham, R Wigglesworth, M Tait, C Bell

Cardiff Blues: B Blair, L Halfpenny, T Shanklin, J Roberts, T James, S Norton-Knight, R Rees, G Jenkins, G Williams, F Filise, D Jones, S Morgan, S Warburton, R Sowden-Taylor, A Powell

Replacements: T Thomas, D Morris, G Powell, B White, R Williams, G Cooper, C Sweeney, R Mustoe

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