Cipriani blunder costs Sale dearly

Danny Cipriani (AFP)
Danny Cipriani (AFP)

London - Danny Cipriani missed a late conversion that would have proved decisive as Sale were forced to settle for a thrilling 36-36 draw against Saracens in the English Premiership on Saturday.

Sale surged into an early 17-0 lead through tries from Sam James, Johnny Leota and Tom Arscott, but Saracens roared back to go ahead before the interval at the AJ Bell Stadium.

Jim Hamilton and Chris Wyles, who scored a pair of tries, touched down, while Charlie Hodgson and Ben Spencer added the conversions.

Hodgson, on his last appearance at the club where he started his career, also kicked a penalty before he was forced off with a head injury.

Cipriani kicked three penalties in the second period, but scores by Nick Tompkins and Mike Ellery moved the visitors 36-26 ahead.

TJ Ioane and Arscott crossed late on to haul Sale level again, but England international Cipriani was off-target with both conversions, the last of them following a 79th-minute try.

Elsewhere, James Hook scored 15 points to keep Gloucester in contention for the Premiership play-off and Champions Cup places with a 32-6 victory over Newcastle at Kingsholm.

Hook scored a try and kicked two penalties and two conversions before being replaced by Billy Burns with 16 minutes remaining.

Bill Meakes, Ross Moriarty, and Tom Savage also scored tries for Gloucester.

Billy Twelvetrees added a conversion with Craig Willis kicking two penalties for the Falcons.

Tom Collins scored his first senior hat-trick as Northampton routed Worcester 38-18 at Franklin's Gardens.

Collins, 21, showed electric pace and clever feet to help Saints to a much-needed bonus point win that avenged their opening-day defeat.

Worcester got two tries from Val Rapava-Ruskin and Wynand Olivier to give them a 15-12 half-time lead.

The game was still hanging in the balance until Collins scored his side's fifth try with 14 minutes remaining.

Harry Mallinder, Lee Dickson and George Pisi went over for Northampton's other tries.

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