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Tuesday Apr 2, 2024

George Ford falls victim to the kickers curse

This weekend Sale Sharks treated their home fans to a terrific Easter Sunday by triumphing over Premiership rivals Exeter Chiefs at the Salford Community Stadium. The home side were dominant in every aspect of the match, with only Immanuel Feyi-Waboso managing to get on the scoresheet for the visitors.

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Former England regulars Luke Cowan-Dickie and Raffi Quirk found themselves with a try each for the Sharks, while scrum-half Gus Warr danced through the opposition defence to pick up a touchdown of his own.

The plaudits had to go to exciting young winger Tom Roebuck, however, after picking up three scores himself with some terrific support play and a brilliant kick-off recovery of his own.

Overall it was a impressive performance from a side battling it out to keep in touch of the playoff places which are currently being so hotly contested. Despite the convincing win however, George Ford will have left the stadium slightly more frustrated that his teammates after falling foul to the kickers curse.

Following in the footsteps of a certain Paolo Garbisi, Ford found his kicking routine interrupted by a falling ball as he went to nudge it over the posts. Unlike Garbisi, Ford did not have the change to reset the ball, and instead hoofed it low and hard – through the posts.

Check it out here:

Following the match Sale director of rugby Alex Sanderson told BBC Radio 5 Live:

“I’ll take that on the back of all the effort and energy that we showed.

“There’s been a bit of defence being optional, I would say, in the Premiership over the last two weeks and we wanted to get back to recognising what our DNA was as a team and defence is part of that, and that was exceptional today as well, let alone six tries that we did score.

“Everyone was well aware that it was do or die or the proverbial or bust – we had to find form and this was the week to find it, so we did. Now it’s about keeping hold of it, bottling it, maintaining the momentum.

“Not just as you go into the semi-final and final, but obviously over the next four games and this is going to separate the wheat from the chaff in the Premiership this year, because any team who’s going to win it has to maintain form for the next 10 weeks. That’s tough.”

Exeter director of rugby Rob Baxter told BBC Radio Devon:

“If we look at ourselves we never really imposed any kind of a game plan on them.

“The first half was one of the most disappointing I’ve probably watched from this group because I know we’re better than that.

“But we couldn’t impose ourselves or our gameplan on the game at all.

“We weren’t where we quite needed to be physically, gain line first half was tough for us, but actually our individual discipline was probably the thing that bothered me the most because there’s some silly penalties in there.”

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