Saracens vs Sale Sharks match report: Danny Cipriani fails to cash in on Owen Farrell’s absence

Saracens 40 Sale Sharks 19:

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The Independent Online

Danny Cipriani’s hopes of capitalising on Owen Farrell’s absence to press his England claims crumbled as Saracens earned a bonus-point victory to maintain their 100 per cent start to the season.

Sale’s line was breached by Alex Goode, Ernst Joubert and Richard Barrington, while referee JP Doyle also awarded a penalty try after a five-metre scrum had collapsed. Such was Saracens’ superiority that they led 30-7 at half-time.

Even when the Sharks were resurgent in the third quarter, Cipriani was unable to take centre stage, with all-action No 8 Mark Easter proving his team’s stand-out performer.

Farrell has been ruled out for two weeks maximum with a slight thigh strain, but the presence of the evergreen Charlie Hodgson meant his absence was barely noticed. Hodgson was typically assured, kicking three conversions and three penalties until he departed in the 71st minute with ice strapped to his knee.


Openside David Seymour and wing Tom Brady ran in tries for the Sharks, who were also given a penalty try by Doyle.Cipriani’s start was not what he was hoping for after one clearance was charged down by Brad Barritt and a second went sideways, inviting pressure on Sale.


Saracens: A Goode; C Ashton, D Taylor, B Barritt (capt), D Strettle; C Hodgson, N de Kock;  R Gill, J George, J Johnston, R Kruis,  M Botha, J Wray, J Burger, E Joubert.

Sale Sharks: L McLean; T Brady, J Leota, M Jennings, T Arscott; D Cipriani, C Cusiter; A de Marchi, S Mamukashvili, E Lewis Roberts, J Mills, M Paterson, M Lund, D Seymour (capt), M Easter.

Referee: JP Doyle (RFU).