Saracens overpower Sale

Date published: September 27 2014

Saracens proved too strong as they overpowered Sale to win 40-19 and move to the top of the Aviva Premiership with a bonus-point win.

Last week’s last gasp victory away at London Irish was a real scare, but Sarries had no such troubles against a brittle Sale defence.

For Steve Diamond’s men, it was a third defeat of the season and a third away defeat in three games, as they have struggled to hit the ground running.

It didn’t take Saracens long to get going in a one sided first half. Alex Goode skipped through four challenges and sailed under the posts after just three minutes.

Sale found themselves 10-0 down before they had managed to get into the game, but were not fazed by Saracens’ ten point lead.

They used one of their strongest components, the rolling maul, to force the hosts back, with David Seymour touching down to put his side back in contention.

That didn’t deter Mark McCall’s men, as they added 13 points in quick succession.

First, Charlie Hodgson knocked over two penalties against his former club, with Ernst Joubert crossing in the corner soon after to give his team a commanding 23-7 lead.

Saracens were completely on top, a fact made abundantly clear on the stroke of half time when they were awarded a penalty try, despite the fact that Sale had the put in.

Though they were pretty much out of the game at break, it didn’t stop them from scoring a sensational try at the start of the second half.

Tom Brady kicked the ball beyond David Strettle, racing past the Sarries winger to pick the ball back up and touch down in the corner.

The only objective Saracens had in the second half was a bonus point try, which they eventually managed to secure after spending a sustained spell camped on Sale’s line.

Richard Barrington was the man to get it with ten minutes to go, in what was a very satisfying afternoon for the title favourites.

A Sale penalty try and a Goode penalty were the final scores in what was a busy day in the capital.

The scorers:

For Saracens:
Tries: Goode, Joubert, Penalty, Barrington
Conversions: Hodgson 3, Wigglesworth
Penalties: Hodgson 3, Goode
Yellow Cards: Goode, Kruis

For Sale:
Tries: Seymour, Brady, Penalty
Conversions: Cipriani 2
Yellow Cards: Seymour

The teams:

Saracens: 15 Alex Goode, 14 Chris Ashton, 13 Duncan Taylor, 12 Brad Barritt (c), 11 David Strettle, 10 Charlie Hodgson, 9 Neil de Kock, 8 Ernst Joubert 7 Jacques Burger, 6 Jackson Wray, 5 Mouritz Botha, 4 George Kruis, 3 James Johnston, 2 Jamie George, 1 Rhys Gill.
Replacements: 16 Scott Spurling, 17 Richard Barrington, 18 Petrus Du Plessis, 19 Jim Hamilton, 20 Kelly Brown, 21 Richard Wigglesworth, 22 Ben Ransom, 23 Nick Tompkins

Sale: 15 Luke McLean, 14 Tom Brady, 13 Jonny Leota, 12 Mark Jennings, 11 Tom Arscott, 10 Danny Cipriani, 9 Chris Cusiter, 8 Mark Easter 7 David Seymour, 6 Magnus Lund, 5 Michael Paterson, 4 Jonathan Mills, 3 Eifion Lewis Roberts, 2 Shalva Mamukashvili, 1 Alberto de Marchi
Replacements: 16 Cameron Neild, 17 Ross Harrison, 18 Vadim Cobilas, 19 Josh Beaumont, 20 Viliami Fahiki, 21 Will Cliff, 22 Joe Ford, 23 Andy Forsyth

Referee: JP Doyle