Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers Premiership Preview

Sale Sharks host Leicester Tigers at the AJ Bell stadium

Leicester Tigers have included their Grand Slam trio of Dan Cole, Ben Youngs and Manu Tuilagi for Saturday’s Aviva Premiership match against Sale Sharks in Salford.

All three England stars go straight into the starting line-up on their return to club duties after the Six Nations.

Cole joins Marcos Ayerza and Harry Thacker in the Tigers front row, Youngs is paired with Freddie Burns at half-back and Tuilagi lines up alongside Owen Williams at centre.

Sale Sharks only victory in their last five Aviva Premiership Rugby matches was 29-23 at home to Harlequins on 5th March.

Sale have not lost in any competition at AJ Bell Stadium since Harlequins were the visitors in Premiership Rugby on 25th April 2015.

Leicester Tigers only defeat in their last four rounds of Aviva Premiership Rugby was 24-36 to Wasps in Coventry in round 16.

The Tigers have won just once away from home in 2016: 19-18 at Gloucester at the end of January.

Sale beat Leicester 10-3 at Welford Road in round 11 and have only once before achieved a season’s Premiership double over Tigers, in 2007/08.

Leicester have won on their last five visits to Sale since a 12-15 reversal at Edgeley Park in September 2009.

Sale Sharks Director of Rugby Steve Diamond has named David Seymour to captain the side in his 99th Premiership appearance.

The Sharks also welcome back Will Addison, Tommy Taylor, Sammy Tuitupou, Vadim Cobilas, Bryn Evans and Eifion Lewis Roberts following last weeks defeat at Wasps.

Centre Johnny Leota is unavailable for the game as he is serving a two match ban following his red card at the Ricoh Arena.

Sharks have lost each of the last five home games to the Tigers but are looking for a double over their opponents having won 10-3 at Welford Road in February.

The corresponding home game last season saw Sharks lose out narrowly 30-32 in a game that produced eight tries and was decided in the final 90 seconds.

Sharks unbeaten home record dates back to April last season when Harlequins won a close game.

Speaking about this weekends game Steve Diamond said, “Tigers will be full-strength. They are a Top Four side, but we’ve beaten three of them this season, so we want to make it four this weekend. We want to keep that record going at home, and stay as close as we can to the group of teams above us.

“We know that Tigers play differently than to Wasps, and we’ve got to be up for a fight upfront, as we normally are, and take some pride in our defence.”

Match : Sale Sharks v Leicester Tigers
Date : Sunday 27 March
Venue : AJ Bell Stadium,
Kick Off : 1pm
Live on: BT Sport
Match Officials
Referee :Tom Foley (17th Premiership game).
Assistant Referees: Andy Watson & Kevin Stewart.
TMO: Stuart Terheege


Leicester Tigers

15 Tommy Bell , 14 Mathew Tait , 13 Manu Tuilagi , 12 Owen Williams , 11 Vereniki Goneva , 10 Freddie Burns , 9 Ben Youngs , 1 Marcos Ayerza , 2 Harry Thacker , 3 Dan Cole , 4 Dom Barrow , 5 Graham Kitchener , 6 Laurence Pearce , 7 Tom Croft , 8 Jordan Crane (c)

Replacements : 16 Greg Bateman , 17 Ellis Genge , 18 Fraser Balmain , 19 Sebastian de Chaves , 20 Opeti Fonua , 21 Sam Harrison , 22 Peter Betham , 23 Telusa Veainu

Sale Sharks

Mike Haley, Will Addison, Sam James, Sammy Tuitupou, Nev Edwards, Danny Cipriani, Peter Stringer, Eifion Lewis-Roberts, Tommy Taylor, Vadim Cobilas, Bryn Evans, Jonathan Mills, Cameron Neild, David Seymour, TJ Ioane

Replacements Neil Briggs, Ross Harrison, Brian Mujati, Andrei Ostrikov, Magnus Lund, James Mitchell, Joe Ford, Mark Jennings

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