|Sale: (15) 25|
|Tries: R du Preez, Roebuck, JL du Preez Cons: R du Preez 2 Pens: R du Preez 2|
|Bristol: (17) 20|
|Tries: O’Conor 2 Cons: Sheedy 2 Pens: MacGinty 2|
Sale held off a late Bristol cost to consolidate second spot within the Premiership with a 25-20 win.
Piers O’Conor scored two first-half tries to assist the Bears lead 17-15 on the break because the guests’ kicking sport saved Sale at bay.
The 2 sides traded penalties early within the second interval earlier than Jean-Luc du Preez pressured his approach over from shut vary with 12 minutes left.
Bristol piled on stress however Sale held agency for a seventh win from 9 video games.
Sale transfer on to 32 factors, 9 off leaders Saracens and 6 forward of third-placed Harlequins.
Bristol’s sixth-successive loss sees them keep second-from-bottom – the shedding bonus level moved them 4 away from London Irish, who’ve a sport in hand.
Sale dominated the early possession and territory, and having pressured a lot of penalties in the proper nook they lastly broke Bristol’s resolve as Jean-Luc du Preez’s beautiful fast offload despatched his fly-half brother Rob over within the nook.
Had Tom Roebuck not mishandled as he dived over the road quickly after Sale would have been additional in entrance, however having been on the again foot for a lot of the opening quarter the Bears went forward by two factors with a beautiful attempt as O’Conor acquired on the tip of a fast four-pass transfer down the blindside from 22 metres out.
However the lead lasted solely three minutes as Roebuck beautifully plucked Dan du Preez’s hanging kick out of the air forward of Charles Piutau and galloped in from the 22, earlier than Rob du Preez’s penalty prolonged the result in eight factors.
Quickly after O’Conor went over once more – a cavalcade of dealing with errors on each side ended with Sale scrum-half Gus Warr shedding the ball to Luke Morahan earlier than the centre went over unchallenged – and Bristol went in entrance when alternative fly-half AJ MacGinty struck a penalty proper on half-time in opposition to his former membership.
MacGinty and Rob du Preez every kicked penalties within the opening 10 minutes of the second interval earlier than MacGinty missed an opportunity to place his aspect one level up.
Sale took benefit and eight minutes later went over as Jean-Luc du Preez powered over from shut vary after a five-metre lineout.
However the guests, who haven’t gained a sport within the league since a 40-36 victory over London Irish two months in the past, had their probabilities to grab 4 factors.
First a cross-field kick from MacGinty was palmed again by Morahan however Magnus Bradbury couldn’t collect earlier than the Sharks repelled a number of phases on their very own line, with alternative scrum-half Joe Simpson bravely forcing Joe Jenkins into contact with six minutes left.
Sale director of rugby Alex Sanderson advised BT Sport:
“It was mega. I do not suppose quite a lot of approach got here into it, if you’re inches from your individual line it is extra about what’s within them and that need and want – I do not understand how they did it.
“If you’re that shut it is about doing it for one another and it’s only a matter of inches.
“It is the actually high quality margins that separated the winners from the losers at the moment.”
Bristol director of rugby Pat Lam advised BBC Radio Bristol:
“Once more, one which acquired away. I am actually pleased with the battle and the trouble the boys put in, we have come up right here so many instances and have not been in a position to win in Premiership rugby.
“Typically we’re approach out of the sport early due to what they bring about, however we had been proper in it the entire approach.
“We had sufficient probabilities to attain, and we did not take them sadly. It undoubtedly seems like we missed a chance.”
Sale: Carpenter; Roebuck, S James, S Hill, McGuigan; R du Preez, Warr; Harrison, van der Merwe, Schonert, Wiese, Beaumont, JL du Preez, Ross (capt), D du Preez.
Replacements: Taylor, McIntyre, Jones, Birch, Dugdale, Simpson, Wilkinson, Reed.
Bristol: Piutau; Morahan, O’Conor, Bedlow, Ibitoye; Sheedy, Porter; Woolmore, Byrne, Lahiff, Batley, Vui, Luatua (capt), Harding, Bradbury.
Replacements: Thacker, Benz-Salomon, Tyack, Hawkins, Heenan, Uren, MacGinty, Jenkins.
Referee: Adam Leal