Bonus-point victory for Sale Sharks

Date published: October 23 2015

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Sale Sharks bounced back from last week's defeat to Saracens with a 27-13 bonus-point victory over Worcester Warriors on home soil on Friday.

Tries from Danny Cipriani and Dave Seymour helped the Sharks to a deserved 13-6 lead at the break.

Despite being under pressure for most of the first half, two Ryan Mills' penalties kept Worcester in contention.

Josh Beaumont went over for Sale in the second period to increase their buffer before the visitors hit back through Jonny Arr.

However, Johnny Leota touched down for the hosts' fourth try late on and a potentially crucial bonus point.

It would have been disingenuous to describe this match as a must-win for the Sharks but, with the Warriors securing a fine victory over Northampton Saints the previous week, a defeat could have seen them drop eight points behind Dean Ryan's men.

Therefore, Steve Diamond's charges, embarrassed by their performance against Saracens, started this match with intent, even though Cooper Vuna's intercept almost resulted in a score for the Midlands' outfit early on.

The maul was proving to be a destructive weapon and, following a dominant drive into the opposition 22, the ball was shifted to Cipriani who evaded a tackle and touched down.

However, the visitors gradually settled into the game and Mills' penalty from over 50 metres reduced the deficit to 5-3.

Sale continued to be dangerous as both Tom Arscott and Mike Haley broke through the defensive line, but often the hosts lacked quality with the final pass.

That profligacy proved costly when Worcester went ahead via the accuracy of their centre, whose second long range three-point attempt bisected the uprights.

But Diamond's side could always rely on the power of their maul and another excellent piece of work from the pack resulted in Seymour going over.

Cipriani then kicked a three-pointer as the Manchester outfit moved seven clear at the interval. The Sharks controlled the start of the second period and Beaumont's try, a pick and go from a five-metre scrum, was well deserved.

Worcester battled back and had chances to put pressure on Sale's rearguard, but they failed to cross the whitewash until the 65th minute when Arr finally made it over the line.

Even though Sale were just a converted try ahead of the Warriors, they went looking for the score which would secure the bonus-point and in the final minute Leota barged over.

The scorers:

For Sale:
Tries: Cipriani, Seymour, Beaumont, Leota
Cons: Cipriani 2
Pen: Cipriani

For Worcester:
Try: Arr
Con: Lamb
Pens: Mills 2

Sale Sharks: 15 Mike Haley, 14 Tom Arscott, 13 Johnny Leota, 12 Sam Tuitupou, 11 Will Addison, 10 Danny Cipriani, 9 Chris Cusiter, 8 Josh Beaumont, 7 David Seymour, 6 Dan Braid (c), 5 Jonathan Mills, 4 Bryn Evans, 3 Vadim Cobilas, 2.Tommy Taylor, 1 Ross Harrison.
Replacements: 16 Neil Briggs, 17 James Flynn, 18 Brian Mujati, 19 Andrei Ostrikov, 20 TJ Ioane, 21 Peter Stringer, 22 Nick Macleod, 23 Sam James.

Worcester Warriors: 15 Chris Pennell, 14 Tom Biggs, 13 Wynand Olivier, 12 Ryan Mills, 11 Cooper Vuna, 10 Tom Heathcote, 9 Jonny Arr, 8 GJ van Velze (c), 7 Marco Mama, 6 Phil Dowson, 5 Darren Barry, 4 Donncha O'Callaghan, 3 Nick Schonert, 2 Niall Annett, 1 Na'ama Leleimalefaga.
Replacements: 16 Dan George, 17 Val Rapava Ruskin, 18 Joe Rees, 19 Tevita Cavubati, 20 Matt Cox, 21 Charlie Mulchrone, 22 Ryan Lamb, 23 Ben Howard.

Referee: Luke Pearce
Assistant Referees: Greg Garner, Paul Burton
TMO: Trevor Fisher

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