Posted in match reports

View from the south stand: Sale 9 Bristol 10 [ERCC]

You know, I can’t be arsed. Take random sentences from previous reports and construct your own. Except…

Except that I’m going to have a word about Arron Reed.

In a pretty bleak display epitomising Einstein’s dictum, this lad – who, not so long ago, was being criticised for having “no defence” – put in three, maybe more, crucial tackles to keep Sale in the tie. If, by some chance, we do progress, the team owe Arron a year’s free drinks for that final tackle that kept the difference down to one point.

In appearing from nowhere and taking the Bristol full-back [or it might have been Uren: I had lost the will to live at that point, and I’m buggered if I’m going to watch any of it again] out like that, he ensured that the next leg is essentially now a one-off knockout game. Can we recover enough to get through to the next round? Let’s not write it off: as disappointing as this game was, a one-point deficit is effectively parity. Put it behind us and go for it.

The injury to Raffi looked concerning; let’s hope it’s nothing too serious. So, my plan of starting Raffi until the end of the season to get him more experience may have been scotched but let’s maybe try putting RdP back to outside centre and starting Wilkinson until AJ’s fit again.

It’s a risk, but I think it may be more important to use the remaining time this season to bring him on a bit more than to chase elusive targets. Plan for next season, is what I’m saying.

Honourable mentions to Raffi, for picking up the pace a bit in the brief time he was on, Luke J for continuing to look more and more assured every time he plays and to Rob du Preez for stepping up and taking over at scrum half: it could have gone disastrously wrong, but he still had the cojones to go for it. Respect.



Photographer and science geek. Rugby fan (Sale Sharks).