Sharks conquer the Stoop

Date published: November 22 2014

Sale Sharks claimed their first victory at the Stoop in six years as they beat Harlequins 16-12 in the Premiership on Friday.

Sale Sharks claimed their first victory at the Stoop in six years as they beat Harlequins 16-12 in the Premiership on Friday.

A late try from Sale captain Dan Braid was enough to secure a famous victory for Steve Diamond’s team.

Braid’s try was one that looked like it would never come in what was an incredibly tight game.

A dull first half produced minimal opportunity for the crowd to get excited on a bitterly cold night.

Sale’s Danny Cipriani scored two penalties and missed two more in the opening exchange, whilst Evans took his points for the season past 50 with two of his own.

But the second half had some excitement, and after a penalty each, Braid went over for a huge win for the Sharks, their first away victory since April.

Cipriani opened the scoring just three minutes in after a strong start from the visiting side. But Evans pulled back soon after, in a game where he stretched his successful kick record at The Stoop to 19 from 19.

Cipriani missed two from distance in the half, though he did take one from slightly closer. That came following an Evans kick, in a half where neither side could gain the upper hand.

Sale’s David Seymour and Tom Arscott were forced off late in the half due to injury.

The second half began as the first ended, with neither team forcing their way forward. Evans got the first points of the half with a penalty, though Cipriani equalised moments later.

Those two scores did liven up the crowd however, and that began to speed up the game, with both sides looking to run away with the points.

Evans continued his perfect kicking, and he was on hand to stop Sale going over, as he got on the end of a Sharks kick with bodies baying.

But he could do nothing to stop the eventual only try of the match.

A big push forward saw the visitors threaten to go over on a number of occasions, but it was the skipper who eventually did, as Braid forced his way through to put Sale on the brink. Cipriani converted to stretch the lead.

Quins threw everything forward to try and preserve their impressive home record of only 1 defeat in 12, but it was not to be as Sale battened down the hatches to secure a monumental victory.

In the process, Diamond’s side leapfrogged their opponents in to 6th place, with their first win against the Quins in over four years.

The scorers:

For Harlequins:
Pens: Evans 4

For Sale:
Tries: Braid
Cons: Cipriani
Pens: Cipriani 3

Harlequins: 15 Ross Chisholm, 14 Charlie Walker, 13 Matt Hopper, 12 Tom Casson, 11 Ollie Lindsay-Hague, 10 Nick Evans, 9 Karl Dickson, 8 Nick Easter (c), 7 Luke Wallace, 6 Joe Trayfoot, 5 George Robson, 4 Charlie Matthews, 3 Kyle Sinckler, 2 Dave Ward, 1 Mark Lambert.
Replacements: 16 Rob Buchanan, 17 Darryl Marfo, 18 Will Collier, 19 Sam Twomey, 20 Jack Clifford, 21 Danny Care, 22 Tim Swiel, 23 Jordan Turner-Hall.

Sale Sharks: 15 Mike Haley, 14 Tom Brady, 13 Mark Jennings, 12 Sammy Tuitupou, 11 Tom Arscott, 10 Danny Cipriani, 9 Will Cliff, 8 Josh Beaumont, 7 David Seymour, 6 Dan Braid, 5 Michael Paterson, 4 Jonathan Mills, 3 Vadim Cobilas, 2 Marc Jones, 1 Eifion Lewis-Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Cameron Neild, 17 James Flynn, 18 Ross Harrison, 19 Magnus Lund, 20 Mark Easter, 21 Nathan Fowles, 22 Nick McLeod, 23 Andy Forsyth.

Venue: The Stoop
Referee: Tom Foley
Assistant referees: Andrew Pearce, Nigel CarrickTelevision match official: Roy Maybank