Monday 23 April 2018

MacGinty stops the rot for Sharks

Sale 25 Scarlets 23

MacGinty kicks a goal. Photo: Reuters
MacGinty kicks a goal. Photo: Reuters

Independent.ie Sportsdesk

AJ MacGinty's late penalty ended Sale Sharks' run of 10 consecutive defeats as they overcame the Scarlets at the AJ Bell Stadium. Sale opened up a 16-0 advantage after 28 minutes through Paolo Odogwu and Will Addison tries, while former Connacht out-half MacGinty kicked two penalties.

The Welsh region reduced the deficit via Dan Jones' three-pointer and DTH van der Merwe's converted try. Two MacGinty penalties to Jones's one gave the Sharks a 22-13 advantage going into the final quarter but a penalty try for the Pro12 side set up an exciting finale. Jones did take the Scarlets ahead but MacGinty sealed the win late on from the tee.

Will Addison of Sale Sharks is tackled by Aled Thomas and Will Boyde of Scarlets. Photo: Reuters
Will Addison of Sale Sharks is tackled by Aled Thomas and Will Boyde of Scarlets. Photo: Reuters

Steve Diamond's men were physical and abrasive, forcing the visitors into mistakes, and MacGinty kicked them into the lead before Addison freed Odogwu to score. Another Scarlets error gave MacGinty a second three-point chance. Once more he found the target.

Sharks went further ahead thanks to a piece of individual brilliance by captain Addison, who scythed through the opposition to cross the whitewash.

The Llanelli-based outfit were now 16 points in arrears but they managed to forge a way back into the contest. Firstly, Jones was successful off the tee before Aaron Shingler sprinted down the right wing, drew the final defender and sent van der Merwe scampering over.

MacGinty and Jones traded penalties but it was the hosts that were creating most of the opportunities with Addison particularly impressing. When he and centre partner Mark Jennings combined, the visitors were forced to infringe and MacGinty extended their buffer.

Josh Charnley of Sale Sharks in action with Aled Thomas and Tadhg Beirne of Scarlets. Photo: Reuters
Josh Charnley of Sale Sharks in action with Aled Thomas and Tadhg Beirne of Scarlets. Photo: Reuters

However, the Scarlets were not finished and they pressurised the Sharks via their maul. When one drive took them to within inches of the line, Magnus Lund illegally pulled it down, earning him a yellow card and conceding a penalty try. Down to 14 men, the home side were now on the back foot and the visitors took the lead for the first time through Jones's three-pointer.

But the Manchester outfit had the final word when MacGinty kicked them to a much-needed win.

Sunday Indo Sport

Sport Newsletter

The best sport action straight to your inbox every morning.

Editor's Choice

Also in Sport