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Butch back with a bang
Sale coach rues first-half display
Bath fly-half Butch James ended a 10-month injury absence in his side's 40-7 victory over Sale.
Everything clicked for the Springbok as his side ran in four first-half tries before he was replaced.
James said: "It's a lot easier for me when everyone wants to get their hands on the ball. I was happy with how it went, it all went very smoothly.
"Even if you are out for a long time you don't lose it. It's like riding a bike.
"I was quite keen for another 10 minutes but I was pretty tired."
Bath skills coach Brad Davis said: "Butch pulled the strings but it's too simple to say that one guy coming back made a difference.
"It was probably the most fluent rugby we've seen all season. We varied our focus of attack today, hit them wide and hit them narrow. They couldn't pinpoint where we were going to attack."
Davis acknowledged that James' presence had a remarkable affect on the players around him, adding: "Michael Stephenson took his three tries very well and I'd say it was his best game in Bath colours."
Sale head coach Jason Robinson added: "In the first half we couldn't keep hold of the ball.
"We are disappointed to have let in so many tries. In the second half we had a lot of possession but couldn't make the breakthrough.
"Butch James is a big player for them and by half-time he'd done the job."
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|Sunday 8th February|
|Saracens 35 - 18 Exeter|
|Newport Gwent D'gons 17 - 13 London Welsh|
|Saturday 7th February|
|Northampton 29 - 6 Wasps|
|Gloucester 25 - 7 Harlequins|
|Bath 10 - 13 Ospreys|
|London Irish 13 - 31 Newcastle|
|Cardiff Blues 9 - 43 Leicester|
|Sale Sharks 38 - 3 Scarlets|
|Sunday 1st February|
|Newcastle 39 - 19 Sale Sharks|
|London Welsh 15 - 20 Saracens|
|Newport Gwent D'gons 32 - 37 Exeter|
|Wasps 42 - 45 Cardiff Blues|
|Saturday 31st January|
|Scarlets 27 - 18 London Irish|
|Leicester 17 - 8 Northampton|
|Gloucester 32 - 25 Ospreys|
|Harlequins 21 - 23 Bath|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com