Sunday, November 4, 2012

Aviva Premiership - Round 8 Wrap

Sale Sharks 21-9 London Irish
After failing to win all season long Sale has finally won an Aviva Premiership match. The result was not enough to get the club off the bottom of the standings but has nonetheless changed things considerably. London Irish are now only one win ahead of Sale while London Welsh and the Worcester Warriors should both be very concerned. Canadian international Jebb Sinclair is expected back at London Irish after the November internationals. 

Exeter Chiefs 33-9 Worcester Warriors
Sale´s win may be sending alarm bells to a number of teams with one of them being Worcester. Its heavy loss against Exeter suggests tought times are ahead for the Warriors while the Chiefs are just one win outside of the Top Four. Exeter scored three tries, the first of whcih went to Pumas winger Gonzalo Camacho in the fourth minute. He played the full match and was joined late in the game by Argentine flyhalf Ignacio Mieres who came on to contribute a conversion. 

Harlequins 28-25 Gloucester
The reigning champions won again but were given a late scare with Gloucester scoring its only try of the match in the 79th minute. In losing by less than seven points Gloucester collected a bonus point which was sufficient for the club to remain in the Top Four of the Standings. 

Leicester Tigers 16-12 Northampton Saints
The local derby went the way of the Tigers as Leicester won a tightly fought contest by one try to zero. It means the Saints drop out of the Top Four for now. Both sides featured players from the Americas. Los Pumas loosehead prop Marcos Ayerza started in the frontrow with the Argentine-Italian Martín Castorgiovanni to reunite the all-Argentine prop combination for the club´s first time this season. Both players played the full 80 minutes. USA international secondrower Samu Manoa will not play for the USA in the teams three tests this month but he did play for Northampton on Saturday, starting in the secondrow.

Saracens 29-24 London Wasps
Saracens´ home win sees the 2011 Champions tied top of the table with the 2012 Champions, the Harlequins. While Saracens has been winning its games it has been goalkicking rather than try scoring that has stood out. This theme repeated on Sunday as Saracens scored only one try compared to eight penalties. The Argentine-Italian prop Carlos Nieto started at tighthead prop and USA Eagles fullback Chris Wyles started at the back for Saracens. Wyles´ international teammate Paul Emerick did not feature for the London Wasps.

London Welsh 16-9 Bath
London Welsh collected a key win and one that in theory should never have eventuated. Last years Division Two Champions are proving to be competitive in the Aviva Premiership and the mission to avoid relegation looms as being one big dog fight. Argentine test winger Horacio Agulla came off the bench for Bath in the 58th minute. Canada´s Phil MacKenzie did not feature for London Welsh.

Aviva Premiership Standings

1 Harlequins 28
2 Saracens 28
3 Leicester 25
4 Gloucester 24
5 Northampton 23
6 Exeter 20
7 Bath 19 
8 L Wasps 19
9 Worcester 15
10 L Welsh 14
11 L Irish 10
12 Sale 6

Playoff´s Places
Facing Relegation

Sale Sharks v London Irish

Exeter Chiefs v Worcester Warriors

Harlequins v Gloucester

Leicester Tigers v Northampton Saints

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