Planet Rugby

Sale fight dying of the light

19th March 2010 22:07

Share:

Sale v Wasps David Lemi Jonny Kennedy

David Lemi tries in vain to spark a Wasps comeback

Sale's fight against Guinness Pemiership relegation is very much alive after a 19-8 win over Wasps at Edgeley Park on Friday.

The Sharks have steadily fallen from grace since being crowned champions in 2006 and faced Wasps on the back of an horrific eight-match losing streak.

Yet while much has changed at Edgeley Park since their title success four years ago, Hodgson remains the creative fulcrum and his trusty right boot delivered when Sale needed it most.

The 29-year-old fly-half, called into the England squad as cover for Jonny Wilkinson earlier in the week before being released back to his club, landed three penalties and converted Richard Wigglesworth's try to claim a personal haul of 11 points.

Kingsley Jones' men led 9-0 at half-time and it was an advantage they did not surrender against a largely insipid Wasps outfit who could not match Sale's energy and collective desire.

Although Wasps hit back through Ben Jacobs' 53rd-minute try, Sale responded immediately when Wigglesworth capitalised on a dreadful mistake in the visiting rearguard for a try which Hodgson duly converted.

Victory was all the sweeter for Sale after Wasps had refused to play the original fixture in November and walked away from the ground just minutes before kick-off because they felt a section of the pitch was unsafe.

Sale clearly needed no added incentive to halt their alarming slump and they tore into tackles with aggression and purpose.

After Wasps were penalised for infringing at a scrum just inside their own half in the sixth minute, Hodgson produced an outstanding conversion to put Sale 3-0 ahead.

The score sent belief coursing through the Sale players and supporters, yet Wasps should have cut them apart had David Lemi not erred with wayward handling on two separate occasions.

First he found space down the right channel but sent a woeful pass straight into touch and moments later another dreadful offload gave Paul Sackey no chance to exploit the space in front of him.

For all their lack of execution, Wasps at least looked lively when going forward and after fly-half Dave Walder failed with a penalty attempt in the 16th minute, they fashioned another decent opening.

Steve Kefu found Sackey scampering clear down the left channel but his pass was forward and the opportunity again lost.

Sale lacked sparkle in their own backline but they were superior in the scrum and Hodgson claimed his second penalty in the 27th minute.

Sale had a try disallowed in the 36th minute, but Hodgson landed his third penalty to put them 9-0 ahead at the break.

Danny Cipriani replaced Walder at half-time and the switch looked to have paid off when he was involved in a slick handling move which resulted in Jacobs bursting over the line.

Cipriani failed to convert the try and two minutes later a Wasps defender spilled the ball and Wigglesworth gratefully collected possession and touched down.

Hodgson converted and, although a penalty from Cipriani kept Wasps in touch, Wigglesworth added a late penalty for Sale to add gloss to the scoreline.

The scorers:

For Sale:
Try: Wigglesworth
Con: Hodgson
Pens: Hodgson 3, Wigglesworth

For Wasps:
Try: Jacobs
Pen: Cipriani

Sale: 15 Marika Vakacegu, 14 Dafydd James, 13 Jonny Kennedy, 12 Nick Macleod, 11 Ben Cohen, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Richard Wigglesworth, 8 Kristian Ormsby, 7 Luke Abraham, 6 Sisa Koyamaibole, 5 Dean Schofield, 4 Chris Jones, 3 Jack Forster, 2 Neil Briggs, 1 Eifion Roberts.
Replacements: 16 Marc Jones, 17 Gavin Kerr, 18 Rob O'Donnell, 19 Sean Cox, 20 Carl Fearns, 21 David Seymour, 22 Chris Leck, 23 David Bishop.

Wasps: 15 Mark Van Gisbergen, 14 Paul Sackey, 13 Ben Jacobs, 12 Steve Kefu, 11 David Lemi, 10 Dave Walder, 9 Warren Fury, 8 Dan Ward Smith, 7 Serge Betsen, 6 John Hart, 5 Dan Leo, 4 Marty Veale, 3 Ben Broster, 2 Rob Webber (c), 1 Zak Taulafo.
Replacements: 16 Tom Lindsay, 17 Gabriel Bocca, 18 Bob Baker, 19 Will Matthews, 20 Hugo Ellis, 21 Danny Cipriani, 22 Dominic Waldouck, 23 Tom Varndell.

Forthcoming Fixtures
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 28
Bath vs Harlequins19:45
Saturday , November 29
Leicester Tigers vs Wasps15:00
Exeter vs Saracens16:30
Sunday , November 30
London Irish vs Gloucester13:00
London Welsh vs Northampton14:30
Newcastle Falcons vs Sale Sharks15:15
More Aviva Premiership fixtures
International Match
Saturday , November 29
Wales vs South Africa14:30
England vs Australia14:30
More International Match fixtures
Guinness PRO12
Friday , November 28
Munster vs Ulster19:35
Cardiff Blues vs Treviso19:35
Saturday , November 29
Zebre vs Edinburgh15:00
Leinster vs Ospreys17:15
Connacht vs Scarlets19:30
Sunday , November 30
Glasgow Warriors vs Dragons16:00
More Guinness PRO12 fixtures
Top 14
Saturday , November 29
Toulon vs Clermont Auvergne14:45
Oyonnax vs Bordeaux-Begles18:30
Lyon vs Montpellier18:30
La Rochelle vs Bayonne18:30
Castres vs Racing Metro Paris18:30
Toulouse vs Grenoble20:45
Sunday , November 30
Stade Francais vs Brive18:00
More Top 14 fixtures
Recent Results
FixtureDetails
All times are local
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 23
Saracens 24 - 31 NorthamptonSaracens vs Northampton Report
London Welsh 5 - 26 Leicester TigersLondon Welsh vs Leicester Tigers Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Georgia 35 - 24 JapanGeorgia vs Japan Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Treviso 24 - 24 LeinsterTreviso vs Leinster Report
Edinburgh 28 - 13 Cardiff BluesEdinburgh vs Cardiff Blues Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 22
London Irish 23 - 33 BathLondon Irish vs Bath Report
Exeter 31 - 15 WaspsExeter vs Wasps Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Italy 6 - 22 South AfricaItaly vs South Africa Report
England 28 - 9 SamoaEngland vs Samoa Report
France 13 - 18 ArgentinaFrance vs Argentina Report
Wales 16 - 34 New ZealandWales vs New Zealand Report
Scotland 37 - 12 TongaScotland vs Tonga Report
Ireland 26 - 23 AustraliaIreland vs Australia Report
Romania 18 - 9 CanadaRomania vs Canada Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Friday , November 21
Harlequins 12 - 16 Sale SharksHarlequins vs Sale Sharks Report
Newcastle Falcons 20 - 10 GloucesterNewcastle Falcons vs Gloucester Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Fiji 20 - 14 USAFiji vs USA Report
More International Match results
Guinness PRO12
Dragons 12 - 38 MunsterDragons vs Munster Report
Ulster 25 - 16 OspreysUlster vs Ospreys Report
Connacht 43 - 3 ZebreConnacht vs Zebre Report
Scarlets 19 - 9 Glasgow WarriorsScarlets vs Glasgow Warriors Report
More Guinness PRO12 results
Aviva Premiership
Sunday , November 16
Leicester Tigers 21 - 21 SaracensLeicester Tigers vs Saracens Report
Wasps 71 - 7 London WelshWasps vs London Welsh Report
More Aviva Premiership results
International Match
Ireland 49 - 7 GeorgiaIreland vs Georgia Report
More International Match results
Aviva Premiership
Saturday , November 15
Sale Sharks 36 - 8 London IrishSale Sharks vs London Irish Report
More Aviva Premiership results
Aviva Premiership Table
PosTeamPPts
1Northampton830
2Exeter828
3Bath828
4Saracens825
5Leicester Tigers821