Match Preview: Sale Sharks v Bath Rugby

Match Preview: Sale Sharks v Bath Rugby

First meets second in Round 7 of the Gallagher Premiership Rugby season, as Sale Sharks host Bath Rugby on Friday night.

Sharks are the only team with five wins from six games so far this season and have a two-point cushion over Bath, who are enjoying a fine start to the campaign.

Luke Cowan-Dickie makes his first Sale start while England fly-half George Ford returns to the number ten shirt, as the Sharks host Bath Rugby.

Sharks Director of Rugby Alex Sanderson makes just three changes to his side following the 40-22 win against Newcastle as Sale go in search of an 11th consecutive home win. 

Cameron Redpath is back in the Bath Rugby squad, while in-form Ollie Lawrence starts at centre.

TV: Live on PRTV, 7.45pm kick-off

Referee: Karl Dickson (80th game)

Assistant Referees: George Selwood & Jamie Leahy

TMO: David Rose

Sale Sharks Starting XV:  15. Joe Carpenter, 14. Tom Roebuck, 13. Rob du Preez, 12. Sam Bedlow, 11. Arron Reed, 10. George Ford, 9. Gus Warr; 1. Bevan Rodd, 2. Luke Cowan-Dickie, 3. Nick Schonert, 4. Cobus Wiese, 5. Jonny Hill, 6. Ernst van Rhyn, 7. Ben Curry ©, 8. Dan du Preez.   

Replacements:  16. Agustin Creevy, 17. Si McIntyre, 18. James Harper, 19. Josh Beaumont, 20. Ben Bamber, 21. Nye Thomas, 22. Sam James, 23. Tom O’Flaherty.   

Bath Rugby: 1 Thomas du Toit, 2 Niall Annett, 3 Johannes Jonker, 4 Josh McNally, 5 GJ van Velze ©, 6 Ewan Richards, 7 Chris Cloete, 8 Jaco Coetzee, 9 Louis Schreuder, 10 Finn Russell, 11 Matt Gallagher, 12 Will Butt, 13 Max Ojomoh, 14 Ruaridh McConnochie, 15 Tom de Glanville

Replacements: 16 Tom Dunn, 17 Juan Schoeman (50), 18 Archie Griffin, 19 Fergus Lee-Warner, 20 Nahum Merigan, 21 Ben Spencer, 22 Orlando Bailey, 23 Cameron Redpath

Oval Insights

Sale Sharks

  • Aaron Reed was the only player to score two tries at the weekend. He is now the league’s top try scorer having scored five thus far and has also made more clean breaks than any other Premiership player (11).
  • Joe Carpenter made more metres than any other player in Round 6, a total of 131.
  • Ben Curry made a round-high five dominant tackles against Newcastle Falcons – as many as any player has made in a single match so far this season.
  • Ernst van Rhyn has made the most successful tackles in the Premiership (95) and the most dominant tackles (14).

Bath Rugby

  • Last weekend, Ollie Lawrence beat eight defenders - as many as any other player - made three clean breaks, and scored a try.
  • Bath have averaged the fewest carries per 80 minutes in the league (101). However, they have also averaged the most metres per possession (8.3).
  • Bath have won a league-high average of 7.2 turnovers per 80 minutes. Sam Underhill and Thomas du Toit have won the joint-most in the Bath squad: six apiece.
  • Bath have played the least ball in play time in the Premiership so far this season (2:48:30).

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