It’s been a nightmare watching Sale : Cueto

Mark Cueto says that it has been a “nightmare” watching Sale Sharks sink to the bottom of the Guinness Premiership while he is away on Six Nations duty with England.

Cueto retained his place on the wing for England’s Calcutta Cup clash at Murrayfield against Scotland but while Cueto knows that England still have a chance of winning the Six Nations he admits that he is being weighed down by concern for Sale.

The Sharks have not won since New Year’s Day and now have just seven league matches in which to avoid relegation.

“It’s an absolute nightmare,” he told the Mirror.

“It’s great to be involved with England and of course you want to do well for your country, but ultimately your club is your bread and butter.

“I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Sale and it’s tough watching from the outside and seeing what’s happening.

“I’m rooming with Mat Tait, who also plays for Sale, and the club is the first thing we talk about in the morning and the last thing we talk about at the end of the day.”

Twenty nine year old Cueto signed a new four-year deal in November with Sale when they were sitting in the middle of the table.

Four years ago they were English champions but since Cueto signed they they have only won once in seven league games and three times in 13 matches in all competitions.

Cueto is on his way to becoming the longest serving player in the club’s history and insists he had no hesitation in re-signing.

“Sale made me feel wanted, they made me feel valued,” he explained.

“That really hit home when Lewis Moody was not offered a new contract by Leicester after a dozen years playing for them.

“Now the club is in a bit of a hole I want to do my bit to dig them out. But for the time being I can’t. I have to focus on England.

“I beat myself up about it but I’ve got a job to do for England and I can’t let it affect my performance.”

Should Sale be relegated Cueto feels that he would inevitably have to move on with the world cup approaching.

“I don’t think it would be an option, for me or the club, for me to be playing in Division One,” he said. “But I’m not thinking like that.

“We know we’re underachieving at the moment but it’s too good a club and too good a playing squad to go down. The boys will pull together, all of us.”

Immediately though Cueto and Tait want to pull out all the stops at Murrayfield.

“We’ve got a responsibility to play well for England, not only for ourselves and for England, but for the boys back at Sale,” said Cueto.

“If we can show them that we’re playing well for the country, hopefully it will give them all a boost.”

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