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REPORT: Bristol Rugby 26 - 11 Sale Sharks

Match Report

Friday, November 11th 2016

Anglo Welsh Cup

Bristol Rugby 26 - 11 Sale Sharks*

HT 13-3

Williams, Tovey, Woodward Tries 'Aulika
Searle Conversions
Searle (2), Jarvis Penalties Mugford, Arscott

KO: 7:45PM

Att: 7350

Venue: Ashton Gate

Ref: Greg Macdonald


Bristol Rugby

  • 1 Kyle Traynor
  • 2 Robert Andrew Hawkins
  • 3 Jamal Michael Ford-Robinson
  • 4 Ian Richard Evans
  • 5 Mark Richard Sorenson
  • 6 Mitchell William Eadie
  • 7 Nicholas Sean Fenton-Wells
  • 8 Jordan Stephen Crane
  • 9 Rhodri Williams
  • 10 Billy George Searle
  • 11 Jack Terence Tovey
  • 12 William Harry Hurrell
  • 13 Jason Christopher Woodward
  • 14 Thomas William Varndell
  • 15 Jack Edward Wallace


  • 16 Geraint Marc Jones
  • 17 Soane Longopoa Tonga'uiha
  • 18 James Stephen Hall
  • 19 James Montague Phillips
  • 20 Ralph Nicholas Koster
  • 21 William Peter Samuel Cliff
  • 22 Adrian Thomas Jarvis
  • 23 Luke Arscott

Sale Sharks

  • 1 James Michael Flynn
  • 2 Robert William Webber
  • 3 Halani 'Aulika
  • 4 George David Nott
  • 5 Lou Reed
  • 6 Ben Anthony Curry
  • 7 Thomas Michael Curry
  • 8 Laurence Francis Pearce
  • 9 James Edward Mitchell
  • 10 Daniel Richard Mugford
  • 11 Nicholas Alastair Scott
  • 12 John William Leota
  • 13 Samuel George Bedlow
  • 14 Charles Oliver Liam Ingall
  • 15 Thomas Arscott


  • 16 Curtis John Langdon
  • 17 Jake Cameron Pope
  • 18 Ciaran Joseph Parker
  • 19 Tala James Ioane
  • 20 David James Seymour
  • 21 Peter Alexander Stringer
  • 22 Samuel Tuitupou
  • 23 Joshua Charnley

Bristol Rugby stormed to a first win of the season as they beat Sale Sharks 26-11 at Ashton Gate on Friday night.

Tries from Jason Woodward, Rhodri Williams and Jack Tovey, together with eight points from the boot of Billy Searle and three from Adrian Jarvis, fired Bristol to a much-needed victory in the Anglo-Welsh Cup.

What happened?

After Sale fly half Dan Mugford had nudged the visitors into a 3-0 lead on nine minutes, Woodward made a dream start to his Bristol career when he scooped up a perfectly weighted grubber kick from Billy Searle to bundle his way over from close range.

Mugford then rattled the woodwork when trying his luck with a penalty from halfway – and at the other end, Searle made no such mistake from 30 metres to give Bristol a five-point cushion.

Mugford was struggling from the kicking tee and squandered another opportunity to reduce the deficit on the half-hour mark.

The hosts were temporarily under the cosh as Sale piled on the pressure, but another wasted opportunity - this time from second-row George Nott, who spilled the ball in the tackle with the line at his mercy – saw Bristol escape unscathed.

INTRODUCTION: Jason Woodward touches down on his Bristol Rugby debut (Photo: JMP UK). 

Jason Woodward was enjoying an impressive first forty in the blue and white hoops and it was his interception, followed by Searle’s pinpoint cross-field kick, which freed up Varndell on the right wing. The speedster was hauled down ten metres short, but an infringement at the breakdown saw Bristol kick to the corner and from the resulting lineout, Rhodri Williams darted over from close range for Bristol’s second try of the evening.

Searle’s conversion was wide and in the aftermath of Williams’ score, Rob Hawkins was sent to the sin-bin for his part in a scuffle.

A man to the good, Sale turned up the heat only to be met by an equally fired-up Bristol defence – and with numbers on the short side, a crunching hit from Searle earned his side a penalty and the kick to touch prompted the half-time whistle.

TRY TIME: Rhodri Williams scurries over for a try just before half-time (Photo: JMP UK). 

Sale started the second half on the front foot and crossed for their first try of the night just four minutes in when Halani Aulika crashed over from close range.

But Bristol hit back with a try of their own, as Jack Tovey sliced open the Sale defence from first phase to slide in untouched – and Searle’s conversion made it 23-8.

Tom Arscott reduced the deficit with a penalty for the visitors, but that was quickly cancelled out by Jarvis – on as a replacement – who slotted home from just outside the 22.

The final ten minutes was played out in the Bristol 22, but a gritty defensive effort saw them hold on to record a first win of the season.

Key moment:

Jack Tovey’s stunning try, just minutes after Halani Aulika had crossed for Sale, gave Bristol some breathing space and opened an twelve-point cushion for the hosts. 

Photo of the match: 

LEST WE FORGET: Players from both sides pay their respects before kick-off (Photo: JMP UK).

Man of the match: Jason Woodward 

This was a dream debut for the New Zealander, who oozed class throughout the evening. Scored one try and had a hand in another as Bristol claimed their first win of the season.

Social post of the day:


The teams:

Bristol Rugby: Jack Wallace; Tom Varndell, Jason Woodward (Arscott 69), Will Hurrell, Jack Tovey; Billy Searle (Jarvis 57), Rhodri Williams (Cliff 65); Kyle Traynor (Tonga'uiha 58), Rob Hawkins (Jones 42), Jamal Ford-Robinson (Hall 72), Ian Evans (Phillips 62), Mark Sorenson, Mitch Eadie, Nick Fenton-Wells, Jordan Crane (c) (Koster 61).

Replacements: Marc Jones, Soane Tonga'uiha, James Hall, James Phillips, Nick Koster, Will Cliff, Adrian Jarvis, Luke Arscott.

Sale Sharks:

Tom Arscott, Charlie Ingall (Charnley 54), Sam Bedlow (Tuitupou 51), Johnny Leota, Nick Scott, Dan Mugford, James Mitchell (Stringer 51); James Flynn, Rob Webber (Langdon 57), Halani Aulika (Parker 75), George Nott, Lou Reed, Ben Curry, Tom Curry, Laurence Pearce (Ioane 51).

Replacements: Curtis Langdon, Jake Pope, Ciaran Parker, TJ Ioane, David Seymour, Peter Stringer, Sam Tuitupou, Josh Charnley.

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