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- Aviva Premiership
- 3rd May 2014
- KO 15:15
- Ground: The AJ Bell Stadium
- Att: 10,092
Aviva Premiership: Richard Cockerill hails Toby Flood; Steve Diamond lambasts referee
We're going to have to go away unless something horrible happens to Saints and we've got to get it right next week as well. We want to still win this and we still think that we can win it and that we're good enough.
Quotes of the week
Leicester Tigers director of rugby Richard Cockerill paid tribute to outgoing Toby Flood after the defending champions secured their place in the Aviva Premiership playoffs with a 42-22 win at Sale.
Tigers were in fine form and crossed for five straight tries, two of which came from Toulouse-bound Flood.
Sharks then hit back with three successive late tries before David Mele scored from the final play of the match to cap off a resounding victory, but Cockerill believes the Tigers still have work to do.
Cockerill was quick to praise Flood, who came on as a replacement for the injured Anthony Allen in the 29th minute.
"He was great for us at 12," Cockerill said. "I was really happy with him.
"He did some good things out there for us and his attitude was great.
"Over the last few weeks it's been a bit of a difficult time for him but I thought that he showed how good his attitude was today and we were really pleased with him."
Cockerill was also delighted that his side managed to secure a top-four finish for the 10th successive season, but admitted he does not wish the season to end there.
"It's nice that we've got to this point but we want to win it," he added. "I know everyone's sitting back and saying we're in a semi-final and that's okay considering the problems we've had - but that's not what we're about.
"We're going to have to go away unless something horrible happens to Saints and we've got to get it right next week as well. We want to still win this and we still think that we can win it and that we're good enough.
"We are still the champions at this point and we haven't been as good as we could have been at some points this year - but we've given ourselves a fighting chance."
Sale director of rugby Steve Diamond slammed the performance of JP Doyle, the referee, but did not use that as an excuse for the defeat.
"I was disappointed with the ref and some of his decisions in the scrum," he claimed. "In the first half he was outrageous.
"I don't like to blame the referees because sometimes they get it right or get it wrong and he isn't the reason we've lost - but there were two decisions in the first half where he was horrendously wrong."
Diamond, who was shortlisted for the Premiership Director of the Year award earlier in the week, admitted Leicester were the better side at the end of the day and said there can be no complaints on Sale's behalf.
"I thought that we were beaten by the better side overall," he added. "In the first half they deserved to be in front. They scored two good tries, they worked our line speed out and chipped over it so there are no complaints really.
"I thought we had a disastrous start to the second half and we then came back in the last 20 minutes, so we're disappointed.
"Overall, we probably climbed the mountain a few weeks ago against Northampton, Bath and Exeter and it's very difficult to motivate yourself after that."Aviva Premiership. Click here to bet.
|Friday 6th March|
|19:45||Bath vs Sale Sharks|
|Saturday 7th March|
|15:00||Exeter vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Harlequins vs London Irish|
|15:15||Gloucester vs Northampton|
|Sunday 8th March|
|14:00||Wasps vs Saracens|
|15:00||Newcastle Falcons vs Leicester Tigers|
|Friday 27th March|
|19:45||Northampton vs Wasps|
|Saturday 28th March|
|15:00||London Irish vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Leicester vs Exeter|
|15:15||Saracens vs Harlequins|
|Sunday 29th March|
|14:00||Sale vs Gloucester|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Bath|
|Friday 10th April|
|19:45||Newcastle vs Bath|
|Saturday 11th April|
|15:00||Harlequins vs Gloucester|
|15:15||Saracens vs Leicester|
|Sunday 12th April|
|14:00||Exeter vs Northampton|
|14:30||London Welsh vs Wasps|
|15:00||London Irish vs Sale|
|Saturday 25th April|
|14:00||Sale vs Harlequins|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Bath vs London Irish|
|15:00||Northampton vs Saracens|
|15:00||Leicester vs London Welsh|
|Sunday 26th April|
|14:00||Wasps vs Exeter|
|Saturday 9th May|
|14:00||Sale vs Newcastle|
|Sunday 1st March|
|Wasps 32 - 21 Gloucester|
|Saturday 28th February|
|Exeter 16 - 6 Bath|
|Saracens 22 - 17 Newcastle Falcons|
|Leicester Tigers 28 - 8 Sale Sharks|
|London Welsh 12 - 50 London Irish|
|Friday 27th February|
|Northampton 17 - 13 Harlequins|
|Sunday 22nd February|
|London Irish 6 - 12 Leicester Tigers|
|Saturday 21st February|
|Bath 13 - 21 Northampton|
|Harlequins 21 - 32 Exeter|
|Gloucester 48 - 10 London Welsh|
|Sale Sharks 14 - 10 Saracens|
|Friday 20th February|
|Newcastle 23 - 23 Wasps|
|Sunday 15th February|
|Wasps 37 - 6 Harlequins|
|London Welsh 12 - 52 Sale|
|Saracens 34 - 24 Bath|
|Saturday 14th February|
|Exeter 46 - 17 Newcastle|
|Friday 13th February|
|Leicester 18 - 15 Gloucester|
|Northampton 15 - 9 London Irish|
Read the thoughts and opinions of Phil Edwards with skysports.com