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Preview: Bath Rugby v Sale Sharks

Preview: Bath Rugby v Sale Sharks

Sale Sharks kept their top-six hopes very much alive with victory over Bath Rugby last week but winger Tom Brady does not expect their task to get any easier in the second clash of the double header.

Sale beat Bath 29-17 at AJ Bell Stadium last weekend and have been victorious at the Rec in two of their last four visits.

Sharks have also won their last three matches in the competition since their 39-12 defeat at Wasps in round 17.

It all suggests Sale are coming into their own just as the Aviva Premiership Rugby’s business end approaches, in sixth place with a game in hand.

In contrast Bath have little to play for, 14 points behind Sale with three games to play, but Brady insists last year’s Aviva Premiership Rugby finalists are always a menacing proposition at home.

“Although in terms of the league they’ve not got a lot to play for the home pride is massive in Bath,” he said.

“The Rec is one of the best environments you could play in the Premiership and they need to finish the season on a positive in what, for them, has been quite a poor one.

“They’ll be definitely firing and looking to get one up on us from last weekend’s victory.

“The top six is our target so we’re not getting complacent. We know our home form’s good so it’s just about picking up these results like away at Bath and then we’ll see where we’re at come the end of the season.”

Sale got off to a fast start in the first game as Vadim Cobilas and Will Addison surged over inside the first 20 minutes.

But Bath flanker Guy Mercer insists his side need to go out with a bang in front of their vociferous home support – starting against Sale – before they start turning attention to next season.

“With three games left, two at home, we definitely owe those guys a couple of performances. We are looking forward to delivering,” he said.

“People will look at next year now but we have three games left, two are at home and against three big teams and we have got to be proud of what we are putting on the field. We pull on the shirt the boys are proud to wear it.

“The first-half tries didn’t help, Sale are a good side and they are pretty relentless. You can’t really let them have that much of a head start. We did fight back pretty bravely; we were pretty pleased with what we did a scrum time.  We just left ourselves too much to do really.”

Recreation Ground – 3.15pm

Referee: Ian Tempest (17th Premiership game).
Assistant Referees: Paul Dix & Paul Burton. TMO: Sean Davey.

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