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Super Sharks Crush Castres

Tuesday 13th December 2005

12:00 am (GMT)

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- 13/12/2005 16:39

- 13/12/2005 16:39

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Super Sharks Crush Castres

Tuesday 13th December 2005

12:00 am (GMT)

Share this page

- 13/12/2005 16:39

- 13/12/2005 16:39

Sale Sharks out muscled their French guests to finish with a comprehensive 35-3 win at Edgeley Park taking themselves to the brink of quarter-final qualification

The win means Sale claimed back-to-back wins over Castres in the space of a week, following their 20-16 success in France last Friday, and they now look odds-on to finish top of their group.

Victory over the winless Dragons in Round 5 means a place in the quarter-finals should be earned with plenty to spare.
Sébastien Chabal bagged a brace, underlining the importance of the star who this week signed an extension to his contract which will keep him at the club until 2009.

Captain Jason Robinson scored a second-half try which rounded off a superb all-round display and replacement Robert Todd touched down late on to secure the bonus point. England fly-half Charlie Hodgson owned the remaining 15 points.

The Sale pack started well, doing damage in the first two scrums. As early as the second scrum of the match, the visitors impinged and Hodgson knocked over the games first penalty.

Castres fullback Romain Teulet and Hodgson then exchanged penalties and after a swift passage of attacking play, involving Mark Cueto, Hodgson and Magnus Lund, the Sale fly-half booted his third three-pointer to put his team 9-3 in front after the first quarter.

Sale first try came in the final few minutes of the half when Chabal rolled over in the right corner after a catch and drive. Hodgson converted to give the hosts a 16-3 interval lead.

As early as the third minute of the second half Chabel when he went over for his second try. The score could not have been more different to the first, the number eight intercepting a pass from visiting scrum-half Alexandre Albouy about 60 yards out to leave the stranded defence in his wake and he galloped over comfortably under the posts.

Robinson claimed his try three minutes later when he followed up good work by centre Mark Taylor to come in on the angle from the left and scurry over, again under the posts. Hodgson added the extras to both touchdowns.

Castres sprang to life in the final half-hour but failed to make it to the try line, the French side twice turned down straightforward kicks at goal to go for a try but they failed to get what they wanted on both occasions.

Making a raft of changes did not help Sale’s cause, director of rugby Philippe Saint-Andre deciding to give some of his established players a well-deserved rest with the game tied up.

Sale chased a bonus point in the final few minutes and got their reward when substitute Todd got on the end of a length-of-the-field move involving fellow replacement Chris Mayor, Hodgson and Lund to crash over.

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