Planet Rugby

Hodgson steers Sharks to vital win

05th October 2007 21:46

Share:

Charlie Hodgson Sale

Hodgson: Another measured performance

Wasps were condemned to their third defeat of the season as Sale battled to a 16-0 victory over the European champions at Edgeley Park on Friday.

England international Charlie Hodgson contributed eleven points with the boot, which included two drop-goals for a much-needed victory for the Sharks.

The fly-half, playing only his fourth competitive game for Sale since injuring his right knee playing for England against South Africa last November, displayed courage as well as no little skill.

He was caught late by a heavy challenge from Wasps forward Dan Leo in the opening exchanges but he gingerly rose to his feet after treatment to orchestrate affairs.

Two first-half drop-goals a penalty from the number ten gave Sale a 9-0 interval advantage, which they did not surrender.

Lionel Faure squeezed over for the game's only try in the 53rd minute and with Hodgson adding an excellent touchline conversion, the visitors were dead and buried.

A Wasps side that lifted the Heineken Cup for the second time in four seasons in May has now failed to win any of their opening four games.

Even allowing for the absence of a host of key men due to World Cup commitments, Wasps director of rugby Ian McGeechan must be concerned about his side's alarming malaise.

It is worth noting that Sale were even more depleted than their opponents but Hodgson, overlooked for World Cup duty by England coach Brian Ashton, again provided a steadying influence in the middle of the park.

His astute kicking gave Sale a platform on which to build but when Leo caught him late in the fifth minute there were fears his night was over.

Though clearly dazed by the force of the challenge, Hodgson was soon back in the thick of things and in the twelfth minute he found the space to craft a neatly-taken drop-goal to edge Sale ahead.

The Sharks were boosted by the inclusion on the wing of Elvis Seveali'i, who returned to the club on Monday after a miserable World Cup campaign with Samoa.

But it was Hodgson who proved the key figure and midway through the opening period some more delightful footwork gave him his second drop-goal.

Wasps, after an abject start, improved as the half wore on and their pack drove them forward at every opportunity.

In truth, though, they created precious little and after Dave Walder missed a penalty, Hodgson did not falter with a three-pointer to put Sale 9-0 ahead at the break.

Hodgson missed a penalty ten minutes into the second-half and Sale had a lucky escape soon after as Danny Cipriani clearly caught Ben Foden late to prevent his opposite number bursting clear.

Somehow Cipriani's challenge went unpunished but Faure's scrambled touchdown in the right corner moments later provided belated justice.

The try was delightfully converted by Hodgson before Sale went on to waste several opportunities to add to their tally as Wasps' tale of early-season woe continued apace.

The scorers:

For Sale:

Try: Faure

Con: Hodgson

Pen: Hodgson

Drop goals: Hodgson 2

The teams:

Sale: 15 Ben Foden, 14 Elvis Seveali'I, 13 Rudi Keil, 12 Lee Thomas, 11 Oriol Ripol, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Nathan Bonner Evans, 7 Magnus Lund, 6 Chris Jones, 5 Sean Cox, 4 Dean Schofield (c), 3 Stuart Turner, 2 Neil Briggs, 1 Lionel Faure.

Replacements: 16 Marc Jones, 17 Ben Evans, 18 Chris Day, 19 David Tait, 20 Sililo Martens, 21 Chris Bell, 22 Chris Mayor.

Wasps: 15 Danny Cipriani, 14 David Doherty, 13 Fraser Waters, 12 Riki Flutey, 11 Tom Voyce, 10 Dave Walder, 9 Eoin Reddan, 8 John Hart (c), 7 James Haskell, 6 Dan Leo, 5 George Skivington, 4 Richard Birkett, 3 Pat Barnard, 2 Joe Ward, 1 Tim Payne.

Replacements: 16 Rob Webber, 17 Michael Holford, 18 Matt Corker, 19 Hugo Ellis, 20 Simon Amor, 21 Rob Hoadley, 22 Mark Van Gisbergen.

Referee: Rob Debney

Touch judges: Martin Buck, Don Helme

Assessor: Brian Campsall

Television match official: Andrew Turner

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , October 3
Bath vs Saracens19:45
Saturday , October 4
London Irish vs Northampton15:00
Harlequins vs London Welsh15:00
Gloucester vs Leicester15:15
Sunday , October 5
Sale vs Wasps14:00
Newcastle vs Exeter15:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , October 4
South Africa vs New Zealand16:05
Argentina vs Australia23:40
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , October 3
Connacht vs Cardiff Blues19:35
Ulster vs Edinburgh19:35
Zebre vs Ospreys19:35
Saturday , October 4
Leinster vs Munster18:30
Sunday , October 5
Benetton Treviso vs Glasgow14:00
Scarlets vs Newport Gwent D'gons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Friday , October 3
Oyonnax vs Toulon20:45
Saturday , October 4
Bordeaux-Begles vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Racing Metro Paris vs Brive18:30
Bayonne vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Lyon18:30
Castres vs Grenoble18:30
Toulouse vs Stade Francais20:45
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , October 3
Pumas vs Blue Bulls15:00
Sharks vs Lions19:10
Saturday , October 4
Cheetahs vs Western Province14:00
Griquas vs Eastern Province Kings15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 28
Wasps 35 - 18 NewcastleWasps vs Newcastle Report
Exeter 36 - 13 HarlequinsExeter vs Harlequins Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 33 - 15 Benetton TrevisoNewport Gwent D
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Tasman 32 - 24 OtagoTasman vs Otago Report
Canterbury 26 - 28 SouthlandCanterbury vs Southland Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 27
Leicester 19 - 22 London IrishLeicester vs London Irish Report
Saracens 40 - 19 Sale SharksSaracens vs Sale Sharks Report
Northampton 31 - 24 BathNorthampton vs Bath Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Rugby Championship
South Africa 28 - 10 AustraliaSouth Africa vs Australia Report
Argentina 13 - 34 New ZealandArgentina vs New Zealand Report
More Rugby Championship results
Guinness PRO12
Zebre 13 - 6 UlsterZebre vs Ulster Report
Munster 14 - 19 OspreysMunster vs Ospreys Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Toulon 40 - 17 MontpellierToulon vs Montpellier Report
Grenoble 27 - 25 Racing Metro ParisGrenoble vs Racing Metro Paris Report
Brive 34 - 24 Bordeaux-Begles
Oyonnax 8 - 19 Clermont Auvergne
Stade Francais 43 - 10 La Rochelle
Lyon 28 - 18 Castres
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Sharks 53 - 24 Eastern Province KingsSharks vs Eastern Province Kings Report
Griquas 8 - 46 LionsGriquas vs Lions Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Waikato 20 - 22 ManawatuWaikato vs Manawatu Report
North Harbour 28 - 25 Hawkes Bay
Counties Manukau 55 - 7 WellingtonCounties Manukau vs Wellington Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 26
London Welsh 10 - 46 GloucesterLondon Welsh vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Leinster 37 - 23 Cardiff BluesLeinster vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Saracens418
2Northampton416
3Bath415
4Exeter414
5Wasps411