Aviva Premiership: Sale v Harlequins Preview


The Sale Sharks will be looking to make a fast start to 2018 when they take on the Harlequins on Saturday the 6th of January. 

Saturday’s battle between eighth and seventh place offers Premiership fans another quality footy encounter for which to look forward. The Sale Sharks went down at Gloucester on the weekend but can leapfrog an inconsistent 'Quins outfit with a win at the AJ Bell Stadium and, in the process, strengthen their quest for a Champions Cup berth.

Sale Sharks v Harlequins | Saturday 6 January  | AJ Bell Stadium | 17:00

To Win (80 Mins)
Sale 9/20 | Draw 19/1 | Harlequins 19/10

Sale Sharks
The Sharks were completely outmuscled in their 20-16 loss to Gloucester and can ill-afford a repeat performance against Harlequins on Saturday. That result came after a heroic effort against Bath several days before where Sale managed to come out 32-9 victors. Their loss on the weekend was just their second in six matches in all competitions and Steve Diamond’s troops will back themselves to get back to winning ways versus the 'Quins and give themselves the best possible shot at qualifying for next season’s Champions Cup.

One player who shone against the 'Cherry and Whites' was Irish-born American international Alan MacGinty. The flyhalf scored all his side’s points, including a try, and the 27-year old will again have a crucial role to play alongside his halfback partner Faf de Klerk this weekend. If MacGinty can take control of proceedings in a similar fashion, Sale will be far too much for the 'Quins to handle.

John Kingston’s men snapped their three-match losing streak against the 'Saints on the weekend, meaning the London club now sit seven points adrift of the playoff places with 10-matches to play. It must be noted, however, just how poor Northampton have been this campaign, and the 'Quins are in for a much sterner test when they visit Sale on Saturday.

Having won 50% of their matches in the Premiership, to date, Harlequins’ inconsistency sees the once mighty club currently occupying sixth-position on the standings; something that should be considered inexcusable from its loyal supporters.

While there is no way of telling whether a win over Sale this week will mark the beginning of a resurgence, the players owe it to themselves, and their fans to go out and make the most of the rest of the regular season.

Verdict: Sale 9/20
While the 'Quins will be up for the encounter for sure, I’m banking on the Sharks’ positive play to propel them to a win this weekend.

Written by Shaun Goosen for @Hollywoodbets.net

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