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Match Report: Leicester Tigers 41 Sale Sharks 18 Match Report: Leicester Tigers 41 Sale Sharks 18

Match Page 2017-18 - Summary

Match Report: Leicester Tigers 41 Sale Sharks 18

29 Apr 2017
Match Report: Leicester Tigers 41 Sale Sharks 18

Freddie Burns gave a starring performance in his final home appearance for Leicester Tigers to put them on brink of qualification for the Aviva Premiership Rugby semi-finals with a bonus-point victory over Sale Sharks.

Burns was one of five Leicester try scorers, scoring 19 points in total, while Owen Williams and Jack Roberts also struck on what were their Welford Road farewells.

The victory means the Tigers are now nine points clear of fifth-placed Bath Rugby, who must best West Country rivals Gloucester Rugby at The Rec on Sunday to take the race for the top four into the final day.

Sale were reduced to 14 men after just four minutes when winger Josh Charnley was shown a yellow card and their forwards struggled at the first scrum, giving Burns the easy task of opening the scoring with a penalty.

Denny Solomona almost hit the hosts with a sucker punch when he kicked ahead on the counter attack, only for the ball to go into touch in the Tigers’ 22.

Just after Charnley returned to the field, the Sharks took the lead when a driving maul from a five-metre line-out rumbled its way over the line, with captain Rob Webber grounding the ball.

AJ MacGinty added an excellent conversion from out wide before the USA fly-half extended the gap to 10-3 with a penalty following another line-out.

Leicester were level within two minutes, however, as Burns neatly stepped through a gap to score a try down the left and he converted himself.

This settled Leicester down and they were in front just after the half-hour mark when Graham Kitchener stretched to score from close range on what was his 100th appearance for the club.

Burns converted before making the score 20-10 with a penalty on the stroke of half-time.

Sale began the second half strongly and MacGinty pulled back three points not long after Laurence Pearce had been held up over the try line by Dom Barrow.

Leicester effectively finished the match as a contest after 63 minutes as Burns kicked towards the posts and after MacGinty was unable to clear up and Williams pounced to score.

Four minutes later, the bonus point was in the bag for the Tigers, when Roberts slipped through some Sale tackling to go over under the posts.

The Sharks never gave up though and they pulled a try back with five minutes left, when Cameron Neild drew his man before passing left to give Bryn Evans an easy run-in.

There was still time for the hosts to add some extra gloss to the score, with Ben Youngs feeding George McGuigan from close range off the final play.

Tickets to the Aviva Premiership Rugby Final is on 27 May at Twickenham are now on sale. If you want to have an unforgettable day out at club rugby’s best Cup Final then click here for tickets.

Match Page 2017-18 - Lineups

Match Page 2017-18 - Current Standing