Sale notch first win as Glasgow crash again
January 10, 2003

European Cup: Sale Sharks 45 Glasgow 3

Sale clinched the first victory of their debut Heineken Cup campaign to send Glasgow crashing out at the pool stages once again.

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The Scottish province has failed to reach the quarter-finals of Europe's toughest Cup competition in five attempts and on tonight's evidence it is not difficult to see why.

After threatening briefly in the opening moments they visibly wilted in the face of Sale's pacy attacks and were on defensive duty for the rest of the match.

Mark Cueto, Steve Hanley, Jason Robinson, Andy Titterrell, Vaughan Going and Charlie Hodgson all ran in tries as the Sharks carved open their opponents at will, denying them the victory they needed to stay in the tournament.

And with Hodgson, England's second choice fly-half, in inspired form with the boot - he bagged 15 points in a flawless kicking display - there was no let-up for the hapless Scots.

Glasgow raced out of the starting blocks and nearly scored after a slick back line move sent full-back Glenn Metcalfe heading for the corner at full tilt but he was hauled down just five metres short of the line.

The visitors continued to pile on the pressure and eventually secured a penalty which Cook Islander Tommy Hayes slotted over - via a kind bounce off the crossbar.

Glasgow's ascendancy did not last long as Sale hit back with two well-worked tries in the space of four minutes.

Cueto notched the first in the 18th minute, coming in off his wing to gather up a flat pass from Hodgson before barging his way through Glasgow's over-stretched midfield.

The score took Cueto to 11 tries for the season, putting him level with his fellow Sale winger Hanley.

But he was not on equal terms for long as Hanley was the grateful recipient of some more quickfire handling from the home backs which he rounded off with a well-taken try.

Hodgson added both conversions and booted a penalty to push the Sharks into a 17-3 lead, leaving Glasgow with a mammoth task given that they could scarcely lay a hand on the ball.

Second row Dean Schofield was sin-binned for an infringement at the ruck as the half neared its conclusion but the home side looked comfortable even when a man down.

And it took them just four minutes after the restart to notch their third try of a night, Robinson scooping up possession near the breakdown before stepping on the gas to cross along side the posts.

Hodgson converted and Sale were back on the rampage shortly after with hooker Titterrell showing remarkable pace for a front-row forward, racing around the Glasgow defence after some good work at the line-out.

Substitute Going grounded a Hodgson kick in the 72nd minute to wrack up another five points and then it was all Hodgson, with the England man scoring a late touchdown which he also converted.

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