Sale Sharks surprise Gloucester in Premiership

Last season’s Premiership strugglers Sale Sharks kicked off their 2013/4 campaign with a 16-22 away victory over Gloucester at Kingsholm.

After finishing last season in fifth position, hopes were high that the Cherry
and Whites would challenge for a play-off position.

However, the hosts lacked continuity throughout the first half as the 2012/13
strugglers notched up a 14-3 half-time lead through Mark Cueto’s try and the
respective boots of Nick Macleod and Tom Arscott.

Andy Forsyth’s controversial touchdown increased the Sharks’ advantage, but
the West Country outfit reduced the arrears to 19-16 through Henry Trinder and
the kicking accuracy of Freddie Burns.

Nevertheless, Sale held on for an impressive win after Joe Ford’s drop-goal.

Despite narrowly avoiding relegation to the Championship the previous year,
Sale were impressive early on and moved into a 8-0 lead.

Macleod kicked a penalty before a fine attack ended in Cueto touching down.
Burns then reduced the arrears from the tee, but successive long-range three-pointers
by Arscott gave them a shock 14-3 half-time buffer.

It was a similar story at the start of the second period as Gloucester struggled
to find their rhythm, and the Sharks duly scored their second try of the afternoon.

However, it came in controversial circumstances. Former Leicester centre Forsyth
appeared to be ahead of Cueto’s kick, but the Television Match Official awarded
the score, much to the dismay of the home side.

Billy Twelvetrees was then sin-binned for the hosts and it all seemed to be
going wrong for Nigel Davies’ men.

But from nowhere Henry Trinder took a superb line to touch down to take the
score to 19-10.

Burns then added two three-pointers, but it wasn’t to be as Joe Ford sealed
the win with a drop-goal.

Final Score Gloucester 16 (3) Sale Sharks 22 (14)

Scorers

Gloucester
Tries – Trinder
Pen – Burns (3)
Con – Burns
Drop –

Sale Sharks
Tries – Cueto, Forsyth
Pen – MacLeod, Arscott (2)
Con –
Drop – Ford

Match Officials
Referee
: Andrew Small (86th Premiership game)
Assistant Referees: Kevin Stewart and Nigel Carrick
TMO: Geoff Warren.

Teams

Gloucester

Rob Cook; Charlie Sharples, Henry Trinder, Billy Twelvetrees, James Simpson-Daniel; Freddie Burns, Dan Robson; Nick Wood, Darren Dawidiuk, Rupert Harden; Tom Savage (capt), Lua Lokotui; Sione Kalamafoni, Matt Kvesic, Ben Morgan

Replacements: Dan George, Dan Murphy, Yann Thomas, Elliott Stooke, Akapusi Qera, Tavis Knoyle, Mike Tindall, Martyn Thomas

Sale Sharks

Tom Arscott, Phil McKenzie, Andy Forsyth, Jonny Leota, Mark Cueto, Nick Macleod, Dwayne Peel, Eifion Lewis Roberts, Marc Jones, Henry Thomas, Johnathan Mills, Michael Paterson, Dan Braid Captain, David Seymour, James Gaskell

Replacements Tommy Taylor, Ross Harrison, Vadim Cobilas, Kirill Kulemin, Josh Beaumont, Will Cliff, Joe Ford, Rob Miller

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