Sharks end pulsating game with a win over Irish
Match Report: It was a hard-fought affair in the Gallagher Premiership between Sale Sharks and London Irish at Brentford Community Stadium today which resulted in a positive 21-13 away win for the Sharks scoring two tries to one.
With limited crowd attendance still in place due to COVID restrictions there was a full compliment of 2000 fans there to cheer the sides on.
In a keenly contested match, which was all lever 13-13 at the halfway break the Sharks managed to come away with the win after scoring an unanswered 8 points in the second half.
The visitors, Sale, opened their account first with an AJ McGinty penalty but the Irish responded with period of sustained play in the Sharks half but with no points scored.
Instead the Sharks added more points to their tally with a well worked try. Faf de Klerk took a quick penalty tap and sent big South African center Rohan Janse van Rensburg crashing over from close range.
McGinty added the extras to extend the visitors lead to 10 points.
Just after the restart the Irish were gifted three points by the boot of Paddy Jackson and were on the scoreboard at 10-3.
However, six minutes later the roles were reversed with McGinty kicking Sale into a 13-3 lead.
Nonetheless 13-3 became 13-6 just before the break when Sale failed to roll away from the break and Jackson kicked his second penalty.
There was drama just before the break when the officials had to make use of the TMO in determining that there was a knock before Matt Postlethwaite grounded the ball.
That wasn’t the end of the drama and Curtis Rona crashed over for a crucial score in what was to become the final play of the half.
Jackson was the architect of this try taking the gap and setting up a two on one situation before offloading and sending Rona on his way to score his second try in two matches.
Jackson added the extras to make it all square in what had been an exacting first half.
The second half was just three minutes old before the visitors regains the lead with a strong piece of play by the Sharks forward sending Akker vd Merwe crashing over the tryline but McGinty missed the conversion.
The Irish weren’t about to lie down though and with possession were soon going through multiple phases again only to end with a knock-on just as they had Sale retreating towards their own line.
McGinty managed another penalty on the hour to make it 21-13 to the visitors and the lead was extended to eight points.
Although the home side couldn’t produce another score the 2000 spectators had the privilege of watching a pulsating game with the match still very much in the balance in the final ten minutes.
For Sale Sharks
Try: Janse van Rensburg, vd Merwe
Pens: McGinty 3
For London Irish:
Pens: Jackon 2
15 Tom Homer, 14 Ben Loade, 13 Curtis Rona, 12 Bill Meakes, 11Ollie Hassell-Collins, 10 Paddy Jackson, 9 Nick Phipps, 8 Matthew Rogerson, 7 Izaiha Moore-Aiono, 6 Jack Cooke, 5 Andrei Mahu, 4 George Nott, 3 Sekope Kepu, 2 Agustin Creevy, 1 Allan Dell
Replacements: 16 Motu Matu’u, 17 William Goodrick-Clarke, 18 Ollie Hoskins, 19 Sitiveni Mafi, 20 Isaac Curtis-Harris, 21 Ben Meehan, 23 Tom Parton,
London Irish: 15 Luke James, 14 Marland Yarde, 13 Sam James, 12 Rohan Janse Van Rensburg, 11Simon Hammersley, 10 AJ McGinty, 9 Faf De Klerk, 8 Jean-Luc Du Preez, 7 Jono Ross, 6 Cobus Wiese, 5 James Phillips, 4 Matt Postlewaite, 3 WillGriff John, 2 Akker Van Der Merwe, 1 Valery Morozov
Replacements: 16 Curtis Langdon, 17 Bevan Rodd, 18 Jake Cooper-Woolley, 19 Euan Ashman, 20 Sam Dugdale, 21Will Cliff, 22 Robert Du Preez, 23 Denny Solomona
Referee: Christophe Ridley
Assistant referees: Paul Dix & Jamie Leahy
TMO: Nigel Carrick