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  • Lund,
    Penalty goals: Larrechea (3),
    Drop goals: Larrechea,
17 - 12

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  • Penalty goals: Jarvis (4),

Larrechea boosts Sale

By Ben Blackmore  

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Daniel Larrechea proved a more-than-able deputy for the injured Charlie Hodgson as he inspired Sale Sharks to a 17-12 victory against Harlequins.

The French fly-half scored 12 points in all, with the home side racing into a 14-3 lead at the break.

Harlequins struck back in the second half, however, with the boot of Adrian Jarvis bringing the London side two within two points of parity.

But opposite number Larrechea struck the telling blow, his third penalty of the match sealing victory for the reigning champions and bringing a positive end to a miserable few days.

Sale lost successive Guinness Premiership matches against Bristol and Newcastle - the latter defeat at home prompting an apology from director of rugby Phillipe Saint-Andre.

Then England number 10 Hodgson and prop Andrew Sheridan were ruled out for the rest of the season after suffering injuries during last Saturday's Test win against South Africa.

And to make matters worse, Scotland captain Jason White followed his club team mates into a lengthy rehabilitation.

Indeed, Sale's start to the match indicated more of the same for the Edgeley Park faithful, with an early Larrachea penalty miss followed by a successful kick from Jarvis.

But Larrachea gradually began to exert his influence on proceedings, some deft handling of the ball being backed up with a drop goal from the 'Quins 22 after 15 minutes that levelled the match.

A successful penalty then saw Larrachea edge Sale ahead, with the hosts scoring their first try in four matches after 22 minutes.

Poor handling in midfield was exploited by flanker Magnus Lund, the sometime England international combining well with centre Lee Thomas to exploit a gap in the Harlequins defence.

Although Larrachea failed to convert, another successful penalty conversion contributed to Sale's comfortable half-time lead.

Looking for their fourth win in a row, Harlequins mounted an impressive second half response, with Jarvis's first penalty pulling Harlequins back to within five points after 55 minutes.

And local hearts were certainly in mouths when a 45-metre Jarvis effort found its target with nine minutes remaining to secure the bonus point.

But it was left to Larrachea to ease the fears of Sharks fans, his fourth goal of the evening settling matters in favour of the home side and getting their title defence back on track.

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Aviva Premiership Table

Aviva Premiership Table - July 9 2014
Pos Team P Pts
10 Sale Sharks 0 0
Forthcoming Aviva Premiership Fixtures
TimeFixture
Aviva Premiership
Friday 5th September
Aviva Premiership
19:45Northampton vs Gloucester
Saturday 6th September
14:00Sale vs Bath
14:00Saracens vs Wasps
15:00Leicester vs Newcastle
16:30London Irish vs Harlequins
Sunday 7th September
14:00London Welsh vs Exeter
Friday 12th September
19:45Harlequins vs Saracens
Saturday 13th September
15:00Gloucester vs Sale
15:00Bath vs London Welsh
15:15Exeter vs Leicester
Sunday 14th September
14:00Wasps vs Northampton
15:00Newcastle vs London Irish
Friday 19th September
19:45Gloucester vs Exeter
Saturday 20th September
14:00Sale vs London Welsh
15:00Harlequins vs Wasps
15:00London Irish vs Saracens
15:15Bath vs Leicester
Sunday 21st September
14:00Newcastle vs Northampton
Friday 26th September
19:45London Welsh vs Gloucester
Saturday 27th September
15:00Leicester vs London Irish
15:00Saracens vs Sale
15:15Northampton vs Bath
Sunday 28th September
14:00Wasps vs Newcastle
14:00Exeter vs Harlequins
Friday 3rd October
19:45Bath vs Saracens

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