Wiese sees red as Toulouse see off Sale
CHAMPIONS CUP REPORT: Sale Sharks were eventually beaten 27-5 by Stade Toulousain in the Champions Cup on Saturday despite offering stern resistance after being reduced to 14 men early on.
The Premiership side were ahead at the break thanks to Akker van der Merwe’s try, but were left with a monumental task against the five-time champions when Cobus Wiese was sent off.
Toulouse ultimately took control of the contest through penalties from Melvyn Jaminet, who racked up a personal tally of 17 points, before late tries from Emmanuel Meafou and Guillaume Cramont sealed their victory, and their place in the Round of 16.
Sale started the game in the ascendancy and were rewarded for their early pressure when hooker Van der Merwe peeled off a rolling maul and burrowed over the whitewash.
But there was a huge setback for the hosts, who had lost starting props Simon McIntyre and Nick Schonert to injury early on, when lock Wiese was dismissed for a dangerous clear-out on 18 minutes.
However, the 14 men of Sale dug in over the remainder of the half and frustrated Toulouse by competing aggressively at the breakdown.
The TOP 14 side made several errors when in promising positions, and their only points of the first half would be through fullback Jaminet’s first penalty on 25 minutes.
Sale began to show signs of fatigue after the restart and Toulouse punished any ill-discipline through the boot of Jaminet, the former USAP man adding a further four penalties over a 22-minute flurry.
Toulouse had struggled to find their cutting edge until the final 10 minutes when Meafou powered over and a break from scrumhalf Antoine Dupont set up replacement hooker Cramont to cross in the corner.
The two sides’ Pool B campaigns conclude next weekend as Sale visit Ulster on Saturday and Toulouse host Munster on Sunday.
For Sale Sharks:
Try: Van der Merwe
Tries: Meafou, Cramont
Pens: Jaminet 5
Red card: Cobus Wiese (Sale Sharks, 18′ – foul play, dangerous clear-out)
Sale Sharks: 15 Joe Carpenter, 14 Tom O’Flaherty, 13 Sam James, 12 Manu Tuilagi, 11 Arron Reed, 10 Rob du Preez, 9 Gus Warr, 8 Jean-Luc du Preez, 7 Ben Curry (captain), 6 Jono Ross, 5 Jonny Hill, 4 Cobus Wiese, 3 Nick Schonert, 2 Akker van der Merwe, 1 Simon McIntyre.
Replacements: 16 Ewan Ashman, 17 Bevan Rodd, 18 James Harper, 19 Josh Beaumont, 20 Sam Dugdale, 21 Raffi Quirke, 22 Tom Curtis, 23 Luke James.
Toulouse: 15 Melvyn Jaminet, 14 Juan Cruz Mallía, 13 Pierre-Louis Barassi, 12 Sofiane Guitoune, 11 Matthis Lebel, 10 Romain Ntamack, 9 Antoine Dupont (captain), 8 Alexandre Roumat, 7 Alban Placines, 6 Anthony Jelonch, 5 Emmanuel Meafou, 4 Richie Arnold, 3 Dorian Aldegheri, 2 Julien Marchand, 1 Cyril Baille
Replacements: 16 Guillaume Cramont, 17 Rodrigue Neti, 18 Charlie Faumuina, 19 Joshua Brennan, 20 Jack Willis, 21 Rynhardt Elstadt, 22 Dimitri Delibes, 23 Arthur Retiere.
Referee: Mike Adamson (Scotland)
Assistant Referees: Sam Grove-White (Scotland) & Dave Sutherland (Scotland)
TMO: Ben Blain (Scotland)