Sunday, 4 November 2012

Fantastic Friday night at Salford City Stadium!

Players, coaches, supporters and everyone connected with the club had to wait a few weeks to see the first win in Aviva Premiership. After Friday night there is no need to wait longer. Sale Sharks beat London Irish 21-9 in a very good style. In my opinion it was one of the best games this season! I am very happy that I was at the stands and could watch our team playing well and winning!

The night was cold, but Sale Sharks prepared a nice surprise for their fans. Yo
u could get a free scarf and a hat if you bought a shirt. Good deal, and very useful (in these conditions), too.
I decided to buy my tickets at the South Stand rather than my usual seats in the East Stand to check the atmosphere in a different part of the Stadium. I must say it was a very positive experience. Fans were even more vocal so I quickly joined the chanting and cheering.

The first half of the game was played in the typical Manchester’s weather. Cold and rainy conditions suited well our local team who dominated in the first 40 minutes. Nick MacLeod was first to put points on the board from the penalty kick. Soon after he scored a fantastic try and extended the lead to 8:0. After 10 minutes visitors replied with a successful penalty kick, but Sale Sharks were still in control of the game. The team kept playing very well showing a great determination and constantly putting visitors under pressure. After 30 minutes, Johnny Leota scored the second try and gave fans more reasons to cheer. Sale Sharks kept creating potential try scoring situations in the first half, but could not quite finish them. After 40 minutes the atmosphere at the stands was fantastic! Everyone got behind the team cheering and chanting. Local fans had plenty reasons to be in a good mood as our team was leading 15:3. Players were focused and committed, dominating set pieces and showing lots of enthusiasm in the attacking game and strong determination in the defense.

Weather conditions changed a bit in the second half. The rain stopped and London Irish attempted to get their second wind. They closed the gap to 6 points after two successful penalties. Danny Cipriani responded well by scoring 6 points from the tee and once again Sale Sharks were 12 points ahead. They had a good chance to extend the lead even more in the last few minutes of the match but London Irish managed to survive our attacks. Final score: 21:9 – a well-deserved win!

I was very proud of the team’s performance. Players showed some big spirit! It was a real pleasure to watch the game and celebrate the win with Sale Sharks enthusiastic fans. I can’t wait for my next visit at Salford City Stadium.