Sunday, February 10, 2013

Aviva Premiership - Round 14 Wrap

Sale Sharks 21-16 Exeter Chiefs
England took on Ireland on Sunday which meant that a number of Aviva Premiership teams were missing key players. This was not the case for Sale or Exeter but their match on Friday was crucial to both as Sale is facing relegation while Exeter needs to get back to winning ways or it will not qualify for next seasons Heineken Cup. Sale´s win sees the club move up to fifteen points but it was all for nothing as the 11th placed London Irish also won to stay five points clear. Argentina´s Worcester Warriors bound flyhalf Ignacio Mieres was on the bench for Exeter.

Northampton Saints 11-27 Gloucester
Northampton was another club that took a hit from players missing to international duty. The teams usual impressive competitiveness at home was lacking as Gloucester completed a comfortable away victory. USA international Samu Manoa started for the Saints in his usual position of secondrow.

Bath 32-9 Worcester Warriors
The horrow early season performances of Bath could well be a thing of the past as the west country club is now clear of Worcester and the struggling clubs of London Welsh, London Irish and the Sale Sharks. On 32 competition points Bath is now tied with Exeter and one win behind Northampton. Bath´s five tries to zero win featured a double from Pumas winger Horacio Agulla who scored twice in the second half. 

Leicester Tigers 28-12 London Welsh
This seasons English team is notbale due to it having a lower number of Leicester players than is customary. It meant that London Welsh did not have the same advantage as other struggling teams like London Irish in the Aviva Premiership and Agen and Bordeaux-Begles in the Top 14. The Tigers´ victory was a three tries to one performance featuring Marcos Ayerza for 80 minutes at loosehead prop. His Argentine colleague, Gonzalo Tiesi made his first Aviva Premiership appearance for the club. He started at outside centre and also played the full match. Outside Tiesi on the right wing was Canadian international Phil MacKenzie who played 68 minutes before being replaced. 

London Irish 29-16 Saracens
A fundamental result for the competition at both the top and the bottom of the standings. The star-studded Saracens team was significantly depleted due to the Six Nations which gave London Irish the perfect chance to get a rare win over a top side this season. The scores were 9-9 at the interval but the Exiles powered home to a big win. The match featured a Canadian and an American with Jebb Sinclair playing in the backrow for London Irish and Chris Wyles playing fullback for Saracens.

Harlequins 16-17 London Wasps
The top of the table Harlequins hosted the Wasps in an all-London match at the Stoop. The Quins had to make due without a host of international players which played in to the hands of the London Wasps who missed far fewer players. The Wasps started very well with two tries in the first twelve minutes to hold an early 14-0 lead. The Quins fought back but it was too late to win the match. The result sees the Quins lose the top spot to Leicester but the club was able to at least get one competition point by virtue of losing by less than seven points. 

Aviva Premiership Standings
1 Leicester 47
2 Harlequins 47
3 Saracens 44
4 London Wasps 41
5 Gloucester 39
6 Northampton 36
7 Exeter 32
8 Bath 32
9 Worcester 26
10 London Welsh 21
11 London Irish 20
12 Sale Sharks 15 

* Play-off´s Places
* Facing Relegation

Sale Sharks v Exeter Chiefs

Bath v Worcester Warriors

Leicester Tigers v London Welsh

Harlequins v London Wasps

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