Sale Sharks vs Gloucester Rugby 23/24 Report

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24 Sale Sharks
10 Gloucester Rugby

Fri 03 Nov 7:45pm Salford Stadium Attendance: 0

Sale Sharks vs Gloucester Rugby

Sale Sharks moved to the top of the Premiership with a convincing victory over Gloucester at the Salford Community Stadium.

Arron Reed scored two tries in the first half, with returning captain Ben Curry and Argentina hooker Agustin Creevy going over after the interval.

England fly-half George Ford added the other points in his first Sale appearance since playing in the World Cup.

Gloucester slip a place to sixth after a second consecutive loss, with Freddie Thomas grabbing their sole try.

Ford and prop Bevan Rodd were the first members of Steve Borthwick’s England squad to feature in the Premiership this season, with Sale glad to have them available after their 43-0 mauling by Exeter Chiefs last Saturday.

There was also a debut for veteran Creevy after his summer switch from London Irish with the 38-year-old back from World Cup duty with the Pumas.

Ford played in five of England’s seven games at the World Cup, contributing 41 points, including all of them in the 27-10 pool stage victory over Argentina, but his last start was in the win over Japan on 17 September.

However, his return to domestic duty was a huge boost for the Sharks as the 30-year-old had played a key role in leading them to last season’s Premiership final for the first time in 17 years.

In front of a crowd of 4,775 that included World Rugby president Bill Beaumont, a George Barton penalty gave the visitors an early lead.

But it was not long before the Sharks’ power began to take effect in the wind and rain on a foul north west evening.

Ford neglected a shot at goal and instead the hosts kicked for the corner. From there, home pressure close to the line ended with Rob du Preez sending in Reed in the opposite corner.

Ford, who missed three kicks in quick succession in tricky conditions, was heavily involved in Reed’s second try as Gloucester winger Jack Reeves made a huge mess of a massive up-and-under and Gus Warr released Reed to sprint home before Ford added the extras.

There was the welcome sight in the second half of the return to the field for Sale captain Curry for his first game since last season’s Premiership semi-final in May when a hamstring injury cost him his place in the final and any chance of World Cup selection.

And his first involvement was powering over to score from close range, a feat later repeated by Creevy to bring up the bonus point and cap the night’s work for Sale, who have not lost at home in the league for more than an year.

Gloucester were well beaten and were heading for a second try-less game until Thomas ran in under the posts to add a touch of respectability to the scoreline.

Sale Sharks head coach Alex Sanderson:

“We won a lot of the scraps and that comes with an intensity that you play with. On a night like tonight, it was about those scraps in the end.

“We had loads of attacking possession that we probably should have converted but we ended up scoring from a stolen line-out and a missed kick.

“To have the lads back from World Cup duty and injury, I thought they had a really positive impact on the game.”

Sale: S James; Roebuck, R du Preez, Bedlow, Reed; Ford, Warr; Rodd, Creevy, Schonert, Wiese, Hill, Van Rhyn, Dugdale, D du Preez.

Replacements: Langdon, McIntyre, Harper, Beaumont, B Curry, N Thomas, Ellis, Wills.

Gloucester: Morris; Reeves, Harris, Atkinson, Hearle; Barton, Chapman; Ford-Robinson, Singleton, Gotovtsev, Thomas, Clark, Tuisue, Donnell, Clement.

Replacements: Socino, Elrington, Knight, Jordan, Taylor, Young, Llewelyn, Hathaway.

Referee: Anthony Woodthorpe.

Previous meetings

A Saturday
April 22nd 2023

Gallagher Premiership
Gloucester Rugby
Sale Sharks
H Saturday
November 5th 2022

Salford City Stadium
Gallagher Premiership
Sale Sharks
Gloucester Rugby
H Saturday
March 12th 2022

AJ Bell Stadium
Gallagher Premiership
Sale Sharks
Gloucester Rugby