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- Aviva Premiership
- 8th Feb 2013
- KO 19:45
- Ground: Salford City Stadium
- Att: 8,232
Aviva Premiership: Sale Sharks' comeback stuns Exeter Chiefs
Mark Cueto became the most prolific finisher in Aviva Premiership history as Sale Sharks came from behind to boost their survival hopes with a 21-16 victory over Exeter Chiefs at Salford City Stadium.
Cueto, the former England wing, crossed in the left corner in the 53rd minute for his 76th Premiership try, surpassing ex-Sale team-mate Steve Hanley's record.
Sale trailed 13-5 at the break despite Daniel Braid's 17th-minute try but Cueto's effort sparked a comeback that earned the league's bottom side their third win of the season. They now trail London Irish, who have a game in hand, by one point.
Exeter dominated the opening period; Gareth Steenson kicked a pair of penalties and converted Watsoni Votu's 34th-minute try to build the visitors' lead, which had grown to 16-5 when Steenson added his third penalty early in the second half.
But Cueto's try was converted by Rob Miller and two penalties - one from Miller and the other via a post from Danny Cipriani - moved Sale in front for the first time after 64 minutes.
Nick Macleod's late drop goal padded the lead five points and the TMO came to Sale's rescue with less than a minute left on the clock when Jack Nowell's try was ruled out for a forward pass in the build-up.
Exeter wing Nowell had a night to forget, he also wasted the chance to open the scoring when he knocked on with the line at his mercy, although the Chiefs did eventually take the lead when an infringement led to Steenson slotting a penalty on 15 minutes.
The Sharks were the next to threaten after being awarded a penalty from the restart. Instead of going for the posts, they went for the corner, a decision which paid off when Braid touched down from a driving maul.
Despite that setback, the away side continued to control proceedings with Steenson and Will Chudley dictating operations from half-back.
Stand-off Steenson put the Chiefs back in front with his second penalty and that was extended through Votu's try six minutes before half-time.
Sireli Naqelevuki made a rumbustious charge through the middle before the ball was spread wide to Jason Shoemark. The Kiwi made further inroads and Votu capped touched down.
The second period initially continued in the same vein with Exeter looking the livelier and their fly-half duly kicked them further into the lead.
But to their credit Sale stormed back. An excellent move which involved forwards and backs alike ended in Cueto going over for his milestone moment, Miller converting.
Miller soon added a penalty to reduce the arrears to one point with 20 minutes remaining and, when Exeter replacement Kai Horstmann was sin-binned for persistent team infringements, Cipriani took the Sharks into a lead.
Macleod's drop goal added some insurance and Sale were able to hold on in a frantic finale.Aviva Premiership. Click here to bet.
|Friday 27th March|
|19:45||Northampton vs Wasps|
|Saturday 28th March|
|15:00||London Irish vs Newcastle Falcons|
|15:00||Leicester Tigers vs Exeter|
|15:15||Saracens vs Harlequins|
|Sunday 29th March|
|14:00||Sale Sharks 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|
|Friday 24th April|
|19:45||Bath vs London Irish|
|Saturday 25th April|
|14:00||Sale vs Harlequins|
|15:00||Gloucester vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Leicester vs London Welsh|
|15:15||Northampton vs Saracens|
|Sunday 26th April|
|14:00||Wasps vs Exeter|
|Friday 8th May|
|19:45||Harlequins vs Bath|
|Saturday 9th May|
|14:00||Sale vs Newcastle|
|15:00||Northampton vs London Welsh|
|15:00||Gloucester vs London Irish|
|15:15||Wasps vs Leicester Tigers|
|Sunday 10th May|
|14:00||Saracens vs Exeter|
|Saturday 16th May|
|15:30||Exeter vs Sale|
|Sunday 8th March|
|Newcastle Falcons 12 - 16 Leicester Tigers|
|Wasps 17 - 26 Saracens|
|Saturday 7th March|
|Gloucester 33 - 33 Northampton|
|Exeter 74 - 19 London Welsh|
|Harlequins 26 - 20 London Irish|
|Friday 6th March|
|Bath 12 - 3 Sale Sharks|
|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