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Match Report: Exeter Chiefs 34 Sale Sharks 19

28 Apr 2018
Match Report: Exeter Chiefs 34 Sale Sharks 19

Reigning Aviva Premiership Rugby champions Exeter Chiefs scored two tries in either half to secure a bonus point success over Sale Sharks 34-19 at Sandy Park.

Scrum-half Nic White and Lachie Turner went over in the first 40 with Byron McGuigan and Andre Ostrikov replying for the visitors.

Jack Yeandle went over after the break with Greg Holmes securing the bonus point despite McGuigan going over for his second in between.

Joe Simmonds opened the scoring with a penalty on four minutes but Sale had the first try as AJ MacGinty put in a delicate chip in and McGuigan collected to dot down.

The Sharks’ fly-half nailed the conversion from out wide but the Chiefs regained the lead on 22 minutes as White sniped from the base of a scrum and went over the whitewash.

The champions’ second soon followed as they earned turnover ball on halfway with Turner bursting down the touchline to make it 17-7 after 25 minutes.

The visitors reduced the deficit before the break though as second row Ostrikov forced his way over from close range with MacGinty adding the extras.

Exeter moved into further in front with a neat lineout move which saw Sam Simmonds release Don Armand who fed Yeandle to go over for the Chiefs third.

But McGuigan’s second – confirmed by the TMO – kept Sale in the hunt at 24-19 with MacGinty unable to add the extras from the touchline.

Chiefs thought they had an instant reply through Stuart Townsend only for a knock on, spotted by referee Karl Dickson, ruling out the score.

A penalty for replacement Gareth Steenson made it 27-19 with eight minutes left before Holmes wrapped up the bonus point in the final minute.