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London Irish

  • Fenby (2), Yarde,
    Penalty goals: O'Connor,
    Conversions: O'Connor (2),
22 - 20

Sale

  • Easter, Arscott,
    Penalty goals: Ford (2),
    Conversions: Ford (2),
  • Aviva Premiership
  • 10th May 2014
  • KO 15:15
  • Ground: Madejski Stadium
  • Att: 8,000

Aviva Premiership: Sale Sharks boss Steve Diamond upset with losing big lead

Last updated: 10th May 2014  

Aviva Premiership: Sale Sharks boss Steve Diamond upset with losing big lead

Steve Diamond: Unhappy with Sale losing a big lead

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Sale's director of rugby Steve Diamond was frustrated his side could not finish their season on a high note after squandering a 10-point against London Irish.

The Sharks had led 20-10 early in the second half, but a revival from Irish saw Sale's run of five away wins in the Aviva Premiership come to an end.

"We want to win every game and, being 10 points up with wind advantage in the second half, we should have done so," said Diamond.

"We should have kicked the points on offer and it would have been nice to finish with a win."

However, Diamond did concede that motivation for the final game, where nothing was at stake for Sale, proved a key factor in their slip-up.

Motivation

"It was difficult to motivate us for this game when we have already qualified for Europe," he added.

Australian centre James O'Connor, in his last match for Irish before departing for Toulon, provided the game's spark and he drew praise from Diamond.

"He was on fire every time he touched the ball and was the difference between the two sides," said Diamond.

Danny Cipriani was an absentee for the visitors, with Diamond confirming that he had been rested.

"It was my decision to leave Danny out. It's all about game management and I wanted to give the youngsters like Joe Ford a go. I have received no approach from England to rest him." Diamond added.

Smith happy

Irish's director of rugby Brian Smith was happy that Cipriani was absent.

"Leaving Cips out did us a big favour as he is one of their big guns," Smith said.

"We found a way to win but our performance was ropey and scratchy. We could have made it more comfortable than it was had we kicked our goals and not missed our line kicks.

"It's disappointing to finish only 10th, we had an opportunity to kick on and challenge for Europe when we won away at Saracens and Wasps, but we failed to do so.

"However, we have a relatively strong squad which tested our resources."

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Forthcoming Aviva Premiership Fixtures
TimeFixture
Aviva Premiership
Sunday 28th December
Aviva Premiership
14:30Gloucester vs Wasps
Friday 2nd January
19:45Northampton vs Newcastle Falcons
Saturday 3rd January
14:00Saracens vs London Irish
16:30Exeter vs Gloucester
Sunday 4th January
14:00Wasps vs Sale
14:00Leicester Tigers vs Bath
14:30London Welsh vs Harlequins
Friday 9th January
19:45Gloucester vs Saracens
Saturday 10th January
14:00Sale vs Northampton
15:00Bath vs Wasps
15:15Harlequins vs Leicester Tigers
Sunday 11th January
14:00Newcastle Falcons vs London Welsh
15:00London Irish vs Exeter
Saturday 14th February
15:00Leicester vs Gloucester
15:00Exeter vs Newcastle
15:00Northampton vs London Irish
Sunday 15th February
14:00Wasps vs Harlequins
14:30London Welsh vs Sale
15:00Saracens vs Bath
Friday 20th February
20:00Newcastle vs Wasps
Saturday 21st February
14:00Sale vs Saracens
15:00Harlequins vs Exeter
15:00London Irish vs Leicester
15:00Bath vs Northampton
15:00Gloucester vs London Welsh

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Phil Edwards

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