Planet Rugby

Sharks kept at bay by Hougaard

05th December 2009 19:25

Share:

Sisi Koyamaibole against Saracens

Star man: Sisa Koyamaibole

Saracens got back to winning ways in the Guinness Premiership on Saturday - but they were largely second best in their 15-13 win over Sale Sharks.

Derick Hougaard kicked five of seven attempts to secure the narrow win but the Sharks scored a first-half try through number eight Sisa Koyamaibole, while fly-half Charlie Hodgson kicked a conversion and two penalties.

Saracens began the game knowing they would lead the standings whatever the outcome following the season's eighth league draw, with second-placed London Irish drawing 16-16 with Worcester Warriors.

Sale, still seething over the decision by Wasps not to play at Edgeley Park last weekend, were fired up for action in the driving rain, and put their unbeaten hosts under pressure from the kick-off.

But when David Bishop took Alex Goode out in mid-air, the penalty into touch allowed Saracens to break from their half.

And from the line-out, another penalty conceded resulted in Hougaard squeezing a fine kick just inside the right-hand post from 35 yards.

Sale's discipline frayed in the face of powerful driving forward-play, and they wore looks of relief when Hougaard's second penalty-kick at goal after nine minutes drifted wide.

Saracens were at Sale's throats again in the fifteenth minute, winning a lineout and driving low and hard for the visitors' line.

It looked a score by Carlos Nieto, but after three minutes studying the video evidence, the fourth official ruled 'no try' because he could not be certain.

Alex Goode knocked on with the line feet away after a splendid pass by Hougaard and Sale were fortunate not to be considerably worse than 3-0 down.

Goode was then taken out in mid-air by Neil Briggs and was led off, blood streaming from his nose. Rod Penney replaced him just as Sale finally escaped their last third of the field and managed to drive a penalty deep into Saracens territory.

The concern from the Saracens bench was audible, with considerable possession and territory yet only a 3-0 advantage.

It proved justifiable as Sale broke out to snatch the lead in the 28th minute.

Hodgson's cross kick found Ben Cohen on the left, and when he was held out, the ball reached Koyamaibole and he forced himself over. Hodgson converted.

Sale immediately conceded a lazy penalty for offside and Hougaard punished them with another fine kick to make it 6-7.

However, having survived a blitz for 25 minutes, Sale were now on the front-foot and Hodgson rifled over a 35th-minute penalty to extend their lead.

When the Saracens pack drove forward Sale had no answer that was legal, and Hougaard banged over his third penalty after 38 minutes to cut the scoreline back to a one-point deficit.

Hougaard restored the hosts' lead with his fourth penalty out of five seven minutes into the second half.

Hi missed another shot at goal, but made amends four minutes later, sweeping home a 45 yarder to make it 15-10.

Hodgson pulled Sale within two points with a penalty after 74 minutes but Sarries held on.

The scorers:

For Saracens:
Pen:
Hougaard

For Sale:
Tries:
Koyamaibole
Con: Hodgson
Pen: Hodgson 2

Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Noah Cato, 13 Kameli Ratuvou, 12 Adam Powell, 11 Chris Wyles, 10 Derick Hougaard, 9 Moses Rauluni, 8 Ernst Joubert, 7 Andy Saull, 6 Wikus van Heerden, 5 Hayden Smith, 4 Steve Borthwick (capt), 3 Carlos Nieto, 2 Schalk Brits, 1 Rhys Gill.
Replacements: 16 Ethienne Reynecke, 17 Kasiano Lealamanua, 18 Richard Skuse, 19 Hugh Vyvyan, 20 Don Barrell, 21 Luke Baldwin, 22 Brad Barritt, 23 Rodd Penney.

Sale: 15 Nick Macleod, 14 Marika Vakacegu, 13 Mathew Tait, 12 David Bishop, 11 Ben Cohen, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Sisa Koyamaibole, 7 David Seymour, 6 Carl Fearns, 5 Sean Cox, 4 Dean Schofield, 3 Jack Forster, 2 Neil Briggs, 1 Eifion Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Marc Jones, 17 Rob O'Donnell, 18 Martin Halsall, 19 James Gaskell, 20 Kristian Ormsby, 21 Dwayne Peel, 22 Chris Bell, 23 Oriol Ripol.

Referee: Dave Pearson
Assistant referees: Roy Maybank, Stuart Terheege
Television match official: Bob Ockenden, Geoff Warren

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 26
London Welsh vs Gloucester19:45
Saturday , September 27
Saracens vs Sale15:00
Leicester vs London Irish15:00
Northampton vs Bath15:15
Sunday , September 28
Exeter vs Harlequins14:00
Wasps vs Newcastle14:00
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
Rugby Championship
Saturday , September 27
South Africa vs Australia16:05
Argentina vs New Zealand23:10
More Rugby Championship fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , September 26
Edinburgh vs Scarlets19:35
Leinster vs Cardiff Blues19:35
Glasgow vs Connacht19:35
Saturday , September 27
Zebre vs Ulster15:00
Munster vs Ospreys18:30
Sunday , September 28
Newport Gwent D'gons vs Benetton Treviso16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , September 27
Toulon vs Montpellier18:00
Stade Francais vs La Rochelle18:00
Bayonne vs Toulouse18:00
Brive vs Bordeaux-Begles18:00
Oyonnax vs Clermont Auvergne18:00
Lyon vs Castres18:00
Grenoble vs Racing Metro Paris18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Currie Cup
Friday , September 26
Cheetahs vs Blue Bulls19:10
Pumas vs Western Province19:00
Saturday , September 27
Sharks vs Eastern Province Kings14:00
Griquas vs Lions15:00
More Currie Cup fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , September 21
Newcastle 10 - 35 NorthamptonNewcastle vs Northampton Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Ospreys 62 - 13 EdinburghOspreys vs Edinburgh Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
ITM Cup
Otago 38 - 7 WaikatoOtago vs Waikato Report
Wellington 20 - 42 TasmanWellington vs Tasman Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , September 20
Sale 46 - 8 London WelshSale vs London Welsh Report
Harlequins 26 - 23 WaspsHarlequins vs Wasps Report
London Irish 32 - 36 SaracensLondon Irish vs Saracens Report
Bath 45 - 0 LeicesterBath vs Leicester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Newport Gwent D'gons 13 - 33 GlasgowNewport Gwent D
Scarlets 43 - 0 Benetton TrevisoScarlets vs Benetton Treviso Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Top 14
Racing Metro Paris 27 - 16 ToulouseRacing Metro Paris vs Toulouse Report
Grenoble 24 - 15 Bayonne
Montpellier 23 - 3 Stade FrancaisMontpellier vs Stade Francais Report
La Rochelle 26 - 29 Bordeaux-Begles
Clermont Auvergne 43 - 12 LyonClermont Auvergne vs Lyon Report
Castres 27 - 18 Oyonnax
More Top 14 results
Currie Cup
Western Province 36 - 12 GriquasWestern Province vs Griquas Report
Blue Bulls 15 - 26 SharksBlue Bulls vs Sharks Report
Eastern Province Kings 22 - 37 CheetahsEastern Province Kings vs Cheetahs Report
More Currie Cup results
ITM Cup
Hawkes Bay 36 - 17 Bay Of Plenty
Manawatu 36 - 17 Southland
Auckland 32 - 7 North HarbourAuckland vs North Harbour Report
More ITM Cup results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , September 19
Gloucester 22 - 25 ExeterGloucester vs Exeter Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Guinness PRO12
Munster 31 - 5 ZebreMunster vs Zebre Report
Cardiff Blues 9 - 26 UlsterCardiff Blues vs Ulster Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Bath314
2Saracens313
3Northampton311
4Exeter310
5Leicester Tigers39