Chiefs romp to six-try win
Sharks all at sea in season opener
Last Updated: 01/09/12 6:16pm
Exeter Chiefs' recorded their biggest ever league win with a 43-6 demolition of Sale in their Premiership opener on Saturday.
The Chiefs ran in six tries and restricted their opponents to just two penalties to take their unbeaten run over Sale to five matches and extend their winning record on the Premiership's opening day to three seasons.
Both sides took time to settle into their game and the Chiefs had problems in both the scrum and with Chris Whitehead's lineout throws.
But it was the home side who put the first points on the board after 12 minutes when Argentina fly-half Ignacio Mieres booted a superb 45-metre penalty from out wide.
Exeter's first try came after an excellent break up the middle from wing Josh Tatupu, who offloaded to James Scaysbrook, only for the blindside flanker to be brought down five metres short .
But Whitten put Mieres over from the second phase of play, although his conversion attempt bounced off the far upright.
The number 10 made amends with a second 45-metre penalty midway through the half but five minutes later MacLeod cancelled that out with the Sharks' first points of the game.
But on the stroke of halt time Mieres landed his third penalty after the visitors were penalised at the scrum to take his side into the beak with a 14-3 lead.
The home side made the perfect start to the second half, with number eight Richard Baxter collecting from an attacking lineout deep inside Sale territory for lock Aly Muldowney to barge over.
Mieres added the extras to make it 21-3 and nine minutes later MacLeod landed his second penalty to close the gap by three.
The Chiefs' reply was almost instant with Shoemark breaking down the left before delivering the scoring pass to Jess.
The bonus-point came midway through the second period when Mieres -up with Tatupu to put flanker Tom Johnson through for the touchdown.
Exeters's fifth try came just six minutes later after the hosts exploited the overlap to with quick ball out from the scrum to see Jess race down the touchline for his second.
Replacement Chris Budgen completed the try count with seven minutes to go and Gareth Steenson added the extras to close out an excellent day at the office for the Chiefs
Sat 16th May
Bath50 - 30Gloucester
Exeter44 - 16Sale Sharks
Leicester Tigers22 - 14Northampton
London Irish40 - 40Wasps
London Welsh17 - 68Saracens
Newcastle Falcons37 - 21Harlequins
Sat 23rd May - Semi Final
Northampton0 - 0Saracens
Bath0 - 0Leicester Tigers