Despite blustery conditions, a struggling scrum and opposition who definitely have never breached the salary cap, Sale Sharks ensured their unbeaten streak at the AJ Bell continued (in the Premiership at least) with a clinical 29-17 bonus point win over Bath on Sunday afternoon.
Well-taken tries from Vadim Cobilas and Will Addison had the league's smallest squad deservedly in front at the interval 17-9 before a nervy start to the second-half allowed Bath to tie things up on 56 minutes prompting fears of the formerly typical second forty collapse that the Sharks have largely eradicated this year.
However the sin-binning of Dominic Day on 71 minutes for a cynical maul infringement and an injury to Kyle Eastmond - compounded by the visitors' lack of able replacement - brought Bath down to thirteen men for the final 10 minutes and the Sharks struck clinically, David Seymour and Mark Easter both going over to secure a warranted, if slightly fortuitous five-point win.
The result means Sale (51 points) have leapfrogged Harlequins (50 points) into sixth place and the final European Champions Cup qualification place but whilst still retaining a game in hand (Bath away next weekend).
The late season push for the top-table of European rugby is well and truly on.
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