LV= Cup: Ospreys leave it late to beat in-form Sale Sharks
Last Updated: 31/01/14 10:37pm
Tom Habberfield on the burst for Ospreys
Sam Davies kicked a last minute touchline conversion to dent Sale Sharks' hopes of reaching the LV= Cup semi-finals, as the Ospreys won 37-36 in Bridgend.
The Sharks needed a bonus-point win to guarantee a place in the last four and they looked on their way as they led 28-13 at the break.
However, the Ospreys bounced back from 36-20 down after 55 minutes - with wing Aiesa Natoga to complete a try-hat-trick.
Ospreys had only one point from their three previous LV= Cup games and they went into their clash at Brewery Field with Sale all but making up the numbers.
The Sharks went into the game with an unchanged team from the one which beat Worcester 20-6 last week - their sixth win from seven games in all tournaments.
The visitors seemed to have put the match pretty much to bed at half-time as they led 28-13.
They showed their intent in only the third minute when Viliami Fihaki crashed over from a line-out drive for the first of his three tries.
But a young Ospreys outfit went ahead briefly 10-7 with a penalty goal from Davies, who inspired a great try with a run from inside his own 22.
Full-back Richard Fussell followed on that break by helping to put Natoga over on the left.
But apart from a second Davies penalty it was all Sharks for the rest of the half.
Fihaki popped up again to go over from another line-out drive. Then in the space of five more minutes Sale had the bonus point.
First more pressure in the Ospreys' 22 saw wing Chris Ingall go over on the right.
And a turned over line-out produced Fihaki's hat-trick score, with the number eight making a dart over the line from five metres.
In the second half Natoga scored his second try but that was cancelled out by a try for full-back Mike Haley and a Joe Ford penalty.
But then came the remarkable comeback started by a try for impressive number eight Dan Baker.
Sale did not help their cause as forwards Ross Harrison and Marc Jones were sent to the sin-bin.
Ospreys took advantage with Natoga claiming his third before Davies converted from the touchline.
LV= Cup 2013/14 R4
Jonathan Davies impressed on his comeback but Scarlets were overpowered 29-10 by hosts London Irish.
Exeter qualified for the semi-finals of the LV= Cup with a convincing 42-3 win over Worcester at Sixways Stadium.
American forward Samu Manoa scored two tries as Northampton beat Saracens 20-16 to secure a home LV= Cup semi-final.