Banner image

Author

Will Carpenter

Will Carpenter writes

Posted Friday, August 28th 2020

Preview: Sale Sharks (a) - Gallagher Premiership

Bristol Bears travel to the north west to take on third-place Sale Sharks at the AJ Bell Stadium in round 17 of the Gallagher Premiership. 

Pat Lam's men suffered a first defeat in eight games against Exeter Chiefs on Tuesday night, while Sale ended a run of two defeats with victory over Wasps at the Ricoh Arena.

Here everything you need to know ahead of Saturday's Gallagher Premiership clash with Sale Sharks at the AJ Bell.


Match details

  • Date: Saturday, August 29th
  • Kick-off: 3pm
  • Competition: Gallagher Premiership
  • Where: AJ Bell Stadium
  • Referee: Karl Dickson (28th Premiership game). Assistant Referees: Ian Tempest & Hamish Smales. TMO: Andrew Jackson. Citing Officer: Paul Hull.
  • Media coverage: BT Sport 2 HD & Channel 5 

Team news

Jack Bates is set to become the second youngest player to start a game for the club in the top-flight since leagues were introduced in 1987 on Saturday (3pm KO).

The homegrown winger, at 19 years and 95 days, is one of thirteen changes as Bristol visit Sale Sharks in round seventeen.

Only Piers O’Conor and Ed Holmes remain from Tuesday evening, as Bears select nine Bristolians in the squad and ten Academy graduates.

Academy graduate James Dun is also set for his Premiership debut, while fellow Bristolian Charlie Powell could also make his maiden Premiership outing from the replacements bench.

Tiff Eden makes his first Premiership start for the club, while there’s a first outing for Jake Heenan since the rugby restart.

Short-term arrivals Peter McCabe and Kieron Assiratti are listed among the replacements and could make club debuts, while Mitch Eadie could make his first appearance since returning to his hometown club from Northampton Saints.

Bristol Bears team to face Sale Sharks at the AJ Bell Stadium on Saturday, August 29th (3pm KO):

15. Max Malins; 14. Alapati Leiua, 13. Piers O’Conor, 12. Siale Piutau (c), 11. Jack Bates; 10. Tiff Eden, 9. Andy Uren; 1. Jake Woolmore, 2. Will Capon, 3. Yann Thomas, 4. Ed Holmes, 5. Joe Joyce, 6. James Dun, 7. Jake Heenan, 8. Ben Earl.

Replacements: 16. George Kloska, 17. Peter McCabe, 18. Keron Assiratti, 19. John Hawkins, 20. Mitch Eadie, 21. Harry Randall, 22. Ioan Lloyd, 23. Charlie Powell.

Sale Sharks:

15. Luke James; 14. Denny Solomona, 13. Sam James, 12. Manu Tuilagi, 11. Marland Yarde; 10. AJ MacGinty, 9. Faf De Klerk; 1. Ross Harrison, 2. Akker Van der Merwe, 3. Coenie Oosthuizen, 4. Jean-Luc du Preez, 5. Lood De Jager, 6. Tom Curry, 7. Ben Curry (capt), 8. Daniel du Preez.

Replacements: 16. Curtis Langdon, 17. Valery Morozov, 18. WillGriff John, 19. Matt Postlethwaite, 20. Jono Ross, 21. Will Cliff, 22. Rohan Janse van Rensburg, 23. Arron Reed.


Last time out

Bristol Bears 16-10 Sale Sharks | Friday, November 1st 2019 | Ashton Gate

Ioan Lloyd’s 77th-minute try and 11 points from the boot of Callum Sheedy steered Bristol Bears to a hard-fought victory over Sale Sharks at sodden Ashton Gate on Friday night.

The Academy youngster latched on to Harry Randall’s kick ahead to dive in the corner late on, as Pat Lam’s men dug deep to overcome Chris Vui’s sin binning and a second-half Sale onslaught to earn a second home win of the season in the Gallagher Premiership.

Three Sheedy penalties had seen the Bears lead 9-0 at the interval in torrential conditions in BS3, before replacement AJ Macginty put Sale on the scoreboard on the hour mark.

Vui saw yellow for pulling down a rampant Sale maul, as the visitors went in search of the game’s opening try. But the Bristol defence held firm and at the other end, Randall’s kick bounced favourably for Lloyd, and the 18-year-old finished with confidence for his second try in three games this season.

There was still time for Sale to spark a nervy finish, as Cameron Neild took advantage of a Bristol error inside the 22 to touch down, with Macginty’s conversion making it a six-point game.

But the home side held on for a fourth home win of the season in all competitions, and their first over Sale since New Year’s Day 2017.

Read the full report here. 


Word from the camp

Pat Lam insists mindset is key ahead of Saturday’s round 17 Gallagher Premiership clash with Sale Sharks at the AJ Bell Stadium (3pm KO, BT Sport 2 HD/Channel 5).

The Bears suffered a first defeat in eight games against Exeter Chiefs on Tuesday night, as Billy Keast’s 78th-minute try snatched victory for Rob Baxter’s side.

And Lam says his side are relishing the challenge of facing a rejuvenated Sharks outfit this weekend and keen to learn the lessons from their midweek defeat.

Subscribe to Bristol Bears TV by clicking here.


Form guide

Sale Sharks recorded their first win since the return to rugby at Wasps on Tuesday. The Sharks lost their most recent encounter at AJ Bell Stadium, to Exeter Chiefs, but have been defeated in back-to-back Gallagher Premiership Rugby matches at the venue since their reversals to Exeter and today’s opponents Bristol in December 2016 to January 2017.

Bristol Bears’ seven-game winning run in Gallagher Premiership Rugby ended with their narrow defeat to Exeter on Tuesday. The Bears are unbeaten in their last four away games in all tournaments since tripping up at Leicester in round eight of Premiership Rugby.

Bristol beat Sale 16-10 at Ashton Gate in round three and have not achieved a Premiership Rugby season’s double over the northerners since 2006-07. Bristol have visited AJ Bell Stadium twice before winning on New Year’s Day 2017 and losing there in December 2018.

Bristol Bears: LWW
Sale Sharks: WLL 


Head-to-head

Ben Earl vs Daniel Du Preez

A titanic back-row battle between England international, Ben Earl and South African dynamo, Daniel Du Preez at the AJ Bell Stadium on Saturday. 

Piers O'Conor vs Sam James

Two England hopefuls do battle in midfield on Saturday, as Piers O'Conor takes on Sam James in a mouthwatering clash.


Statto's corner

  • At 19 years and 95 days, Jack Bates becomes Bristol’s eighth youngest Premiership debutant, after Ioan Lloyd, Alex Cadwallader, Ollie Hayes, Luke Eves, Iain Grieve, Mark Denney and Ryan Prosser. Denney is the only one to debut as a starting player and was only younger by 11 days
  • Nine Bristolians, three current Academy players and seven Academy graduates in matchday 23
  • Mitch Eadie set for 150th appearance for the club if used from replacements
  • Piers O'Conor will make 50th competitive appearance

Latest News

LIVE! Newcastle Falcons vs Bristol Bears

LIVE! Newcastle Falcons vs Bristol Bears

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021

Match preview: Newcastle Falcons (a) - GP R5

Match preview: Newcastle Falcons (a) - GP R5

Posted: Friday, October 15th 2021

Team news: Newcastle Falcons vs Bristol Bears - GP R5

Team news: Newcastle Falcons vs Bristol Bears - GP R5

Posted: Friday, October 15th 2021

Jack Bates: 'I'm learning every day'

Jack Bates: 'I'm learning every day'

Posted: Friday, October 15th 2021

Also from Bristol Sport

📝 Live: Bristol City v AFC Bournemouth
Football icon

📝 Live: Bristol City v AFC Bournemouth

Follow today's action against the Cherries with the Matchday Centre.

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021 • Football

🏟 Gate Guide: AFC Bournemouth
Football icon

🏟 Gate Guide: AFC Bournemouth

City host AFC Bournemouth this Saturday (October 16th, 3pm) and here’s your easy guide for what to expect, if you’re heading to BS3...

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021 • Football

🔎 MansionBet Match Preview: AFC Bournemouth (H)
Football icon

🔎 MansionBet Match Preview: AFC Bournemouth (H)

We face the league leaders in an exciting return to Ashton Gate after the latest international break.

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021 • Football

📕 Read the online Matchday Programme: City v AFC Bournemouth
Football icon

📕 Read the online Matchday Programme: City v AFC Bournemouth

The latest Robins Matchday Programme is now available to read online free to all City supporters.

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021 • Football

Dress to impress with City's third kit
Football icon

Dress to impress with City's third kit

Fans can now dress to impress with the Robins third kit in a uniquely Bristol City take on the pinstripe look.

Posted: Saturday, October 16th 2021 • Football