Match Report – Sale 2 v Vale of Lune 2

On a chilly afternoon at the CorpAcq Stadium Sale FC’s 2ndteam entertained bottom side Vale of Lune, who had won only one of their previous nine games going into this weekend’s fixtures. Whereas Sale had been on a losing run over the past couple of weeks, therefore creating the need for a win before the Christmas period comes around.

From the outset it seemed that the game was going to be about small margins and importantly who took their chances well, when they were presented to either side throughout the match.

Additionally, it was also about the early exchanges that took place with each side working hard around the field to take advantage of some sloppy play, that would create chances for the first score of the match. For the most part of the first 20 minutes both Vale of Lune and Sale couldn’t really get out of first gear with multiple errors bringing to a halt some great flowing moves.

It wasn’t however until the 19thminute when the visitors took the lead thanks to their powerful Pacific Islander To’i Aulitia, who brushed off six tackles to score underneath the posts. With Fawcett adding the extras it gave Vale a 0-7 lead.

With the visitors looking to capitalise on their early lead, Vale began to bring wave after wave of attacks that caused Sale to defend stoutly as they repelled each attack with some great defence.

These attacking moves by the visitors only seemed to ignite the fire in the home side’s engine room, allowing the home side to launch their own moves that would bring them level in the game some 15 minutes later as Mike Agyei-King rounded off a great move for Sale from an attacking lineout allowing the pacey winger to go over unattended in the left corner. Unfortunately, Callum Ramsey missed the extras, however Sale were now back in the fixture.

It was Sale who then took the lead some three minutes later, thanks to the individual brilliance of Centre Jarrod Townson who finished off a sweeping movement from the Sale backs, releasing him to run some 50 metres with the Vale defenders chasing him down before he scored in the corner with a Vale back hanging on to him trying to prevent the centre scoring. Callum Ramsey this time managed to add the extras giving the home side a slender lead at the half time break, Sale 12 Vale of Lune 7.

With the momentum coming back the way of the home side going into the halftime break, you would argue it should have been they who would start much the brighter at the beginning of the second half of this fixture.

However, the momentum shift as well as their lead would be short-lived, due to the visitors scoring with just one minute of the second half gone. As No.8 Dan Rainford scored unattended from the base of the scrum. The extras were missed by Vale, but the game was back to all square.

For now Sale were still in the game as they looked to retake the lead from the kick off. Unfortunately, at this time Sale weren’t able to retain possession, even though the referee awarded them a series of penalties that would bring them close to scoring on a number of occasions.

Next on the score sheet at 46 minutes, were Vale who scored in the corner thanks to Kyle Dempsey finishing off a well worked move. The Vale No.10 was unable to add the extras at this time, but Vale now had the bit between their teeth, providing them with a 17-12 advantage over the home side.

As the game progressed into the third quarter, it felt like Sale would make their way back into the game once more as they worked hard to take their chances, developed from some fine moving interplay between the backs and forwards. Putting these moves together gave the home side some real purpose in attack, whilst at the same time it allowed them to defend in a composed manner.

Unfortunately for the home side, they never really got back into the game fully and they leaked a further try on 67 minutes, when Fraser Spavin scored by picking up from the base of the scrum scoring whilst most of the Sale pack were still engaged at the set piece. With Centre Fawcett adding the extras, Vale now had a 12 point lead going into the last 10 minutes of the match.

Just seven minutes later, Vale scored again as second row Bobby Holbrook barged his way through the lacklustre Sale defence, scoring at the side of the right hand upright, closing the game out for the visitors. The conversion was missed by Fawcett, but that mattered not as the game was finally settled in the closing moments when Callum Ramsey threw a hail Mary aimlessly into the score, allowing Vale’s Hunt to complete Vale’s scoring following a kick chase that ended with a well taken chance at the end of the game. Hunt added the extras and the game was over as a contest.

The final score ended 12-36 to Vale of Lune, who deserved the victory on the balance of things, but it was most definitely a game of two halves as Sale failed to increase their first half lead, not scoring any points in the second half of the match.

For post-match comments on the game please check out the interview with Captain Ben Simpson on our website and social media feeds.


Date Time League Season
24th November 2018 14:30 Cotton Traders Premier League 2018-2019


Sale FC 2000012
Vale of Lune 2000036


Sale FC Rugby
Sale Rugby Club, Heywood Rd, Sale M33 3WB, UK