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Page last updated at 16:46 GMT, Saturday, 27 February 2010

Gloucester 47-3 Sale

Gloucester (26) 47
Tries: Penalty, Vainikolo 2, Qera, Robinson, Simpson-Daniel, Hazell Cons: Robinson 4, Taylor 2
Sale (3) 3
Pens: Hodgson

Lesley Vainikolo
Vainikolo dives over for the first of his two tries in Gloucester's win over Sale

Gloucester cut Sale apart with seven tries as they cruised to an easy victory at muddy Kingsholm.

A penalty try gave Gloucester the perfect start before Lesley Vainikolo went over twice in quick succession.

Akapusi Quea added their fourth try before Charlie Hodgson kicked Sale's only points as Gloucester went in at half time 26-3 in front.

They added three more tries in the last 13 minutes through Nicky Robinson, James Simpson-Daniel and Andy Hazell.

Gloucester's win lifted them three places to sixth in the Premiership table, while Sale remain deep in trouble, only four points above bottom-of-the-table Leeds.

The game was effectively over as early as the 29th minute by which time Gloucester had opened up a 26-0 lead and bagged a bonus point.

After heavy rain left the Kingsholm pitch soaked, the Sharks could not have got off to a worse start when referee Dean Richards awarded a penalty try against them after only seven minutes, ruling that they had collapsed a scrum near their own posts.

Vainikolo then twice went over in the left corner, first after bursting onto full-back Olly Morgan's pass before outpacing Brent Cockbain for his second.

Flanker Qera theatrically dived over the line near the posts for his side's fourth try as Sale's defence went missing.

But, although Sale improved after the introduction of Dwayne Peel, they conceded three more tries late on.

Robinson, who also kicked four conversions, dived on to his own chip for try number five, Simpson-Daniel pounced on his own kick for number six before Hazell wrapped it up after good work from Tim Taylor.

Gloucester head coach Bryan Redpath:
"We got the ascendancy in the first 20 minutes at the set-piece scrum which enabled us to get a platform.

"Credit to the players that the skill set in those conditions was great. We did not knock-on as many balls as the opposition and we were far more clinical when we had the opportunity.

"The desire and work ethic of the forwards was great. They tend to get lost in conditions like that.

"We learnt a lesson from last week when Leicester were very strong in the scrum. It creates problems for teams and it makes it very difficult for other teams, especially on a pitch like that today, if you are under pressure set-piece-wise.

"The pleasing thing is we got what we wanted which was a win - and a bonus point win too."

Sale head coach Kingsley Jones:
"It was a painful 80 minutes, to be honest, with the first 20 minutes particularly painful. We struggled with our scrum and, in that first 20 minutes, Gloucester were excellent.

"The pressure and the upper hand they had told on us. Everything stemmed from there, even the counter-attack stuff.

"It is a difficult one. At half-time, we said it was the low point of the season and I wanted us to go back out there and start it again right from then.

"My job is not easy in situations like this and the thing for us is how we get back to where we need to be. We really need to regain some confidence now and get things right."

Gloucester: Morgan, Simpson-Daniel, Tindall, Molenaar, Vainikolo, Robinson, R. Lawson, Wood, Azam, Somerville, James, Brown, Buxton, Qera, Delve.
Replacements: Fuimaono-Sapolu for Tindall (41), Taylor for Robinson (69), Lewis for R. Lawson (57), Capdevielle for Wood (62), Dawidiuk for Azam (64), Doran-Jones for Somerville (49), Eustace for Buxton (57), Hazell for Qera (64).

Sale: Vakacegu, Ripol, James, Bishop, Cohen, Hodgson, Wigglesworth, E. Roberts, Schwalger, Halsall, C. Jones, Cockbain, Ormsby, Seymour, Koyamailbole.
Replacements: Davies for Bishop (74), Peel for Wigglesworth (54), Briggs for Schwalger (63), Kerr for Halsall (20), Cox for C. Jones (61), Kench for Cockbain (54). Not Used: O'Donnell, Styles.

Att: 10,548.

Ref: Dean Richards (RFU).

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see also
Rugby union commentaries
09 Sep 10 |  Rugby Union
Leicester 33-11 Gloucester
20 Feb 10 |  English
Sale 10-19 Leeds
19 Feb 10 |  English

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