Beverley Take The Wind Out Of High Flying Sale

Beverley Take The Wind Out Of High Flying Sale

A humdinger of a match. An encounter with high flying Sale when nearly a dozen of your first team squad are unavailable would not be many clubs’ first choice for a fixture. But Beverley rose to the occasion superbly and fully deserved this victory which may have surprised Sale but probably surprised the Beverley supporters even more. Several of Beverley’s recent performances have been below par but today their play was quite outstanding. They simply never allowed Sale to get going. Their tackling was ferocious and the pack totally dominated the breakdown, winning numerous turnover balls in the process.

The pattern of the game was established from the kick-off. Both these sides base their game on running rugby and both attacked with abandon. Beverley clearly had no intention of giving promotion chasing Sale an easy ride and it was no surprise when they themselves took the lead. From a scrum on midway Beverley attacked down the narrow side where scrum half James Munro sold a clever dummy and sprinted forty metres to the posts. Phil Duboulay kicked the conversion.

Two powerful breaks by James Holland nearly added to it but a further score was not long in coming. Beverley attacked from their own half, Tonci Buzov broke the line, and Richard Bussey sent winger racing to the line. Duboulay’s conversion went just wide but five minutes before halftime he slotted a penalty to take Beverley three scores clear. Sale had been confined to their own territory for most of the half and Beverley were good value for their 15-0 interval lead.

You suspected that Sale would come back strongly in the second half but a second converted try by Munro after Beverley had won a turnover ball took it to 22-0. Sale were now four scores behind and clearly facing an uphill struggle. They attacked relentlessly but could make little headway against some determined tackling in which Joe Pickets, Holland, and Kris Renwick were particularly outstanding. Behind the scrum the Beverley backs with ball in hand had the greater guile and always posed the greater threat.

With the game going into its last quarter Sale at last began to turn it on. Wing Cairan Connolly went over for a try after Beverley lost the ball at a line-out and a close finish suddenly became a possibility. The departure of Pickets to the sin bin for a dangerous tackle was a blow for Beverley but they continued to defend their line heroically and Sale could find no way through.

For half an hour play was suspended awaiting the arrival of an ambulance for a serious Sale injury which sadly put a dampener on the afternoon.

When the game resumed eighteen minutes play remained and Sale quickly got a second try when their pack drove over, number eight Jonathan Keep touching down and Liam McGovern adding the conversion. It now looked like being an edgy last fifteen minutes for Beverley. Their line was under a good deal of pressure but oddly enough it was Beverley who several times came the closest to adding to their score. A break from his own line by all but brought a third try for Munro and Tomasi Tanumi got in at the corner only to be adjudged to have put a foot in touch which the video later showed to be a touchjudge error. It was unlucky for Beverley because it cost them a four try bonus point.

Five minutes from time Duboulay stretched the lead with a penalty and then departed to the sin bin for a high tackle. Sale now needed two converted tries and they might have got one of them but full back Mark Simpson was red carded for dangerous play as they drove for the corner. Time ran out with under increasing pressure but still looking the more likely to score. It was a fine win for Beverley but for Sale the defeat looks to have seriously dented their promotion hopes.

Final Score: Beverley RUFC 25 Sale 12 | Reported by John Nursey

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