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Sale Sharks 32 Wasps 29
Sale Sharks and Wasps were involved in another nip-and-tuck encounter with the former shading the win by 32-29 thanks to Nick MacLeod's late penalty. Sharks' tries came through Alberto De Marchi, Josh Beaumont, Viliami Fihaki and Charlie Ingall, while Wasps also got the bonus point via Will Rowlands, Ed Jackson and the impressive Will Helu (2). But Joe Ford and MacLeod's combined off the tee to snare 12 points - outgunning Wasps fly-half Alex Lozowski by three.
|Tries: De Marchi, Beaumont, Fihaki, Ingall||Tries: Rowlands, Helu 2, Jackson|
|Conversions: Ford 2, MacLeod||Conversations: Lozowski 3|
|Penalties: Ford, MacLeod||Penalties: Lozowski|
Bath Rugby 47 London Welsh 7
At the Rec Max Northcote-Green was the pick of the bunch as the flanker's try-double helped condemn London Welsh to a disappointing 47-7 loss. Olly Woodburn, Matt Banahan, Richard Lane and Marcus Garratt were also among the scorers, with Nick Scott's converted try the sole score for the Exiles.
|Bath Rugby||London Welsh|
|Tries: Northcote-Green 2, Woodburn, penalty,
Banahan, Lane, Garratt
|Conversions: Henson 3||Conversion: Robinson|
|Penalties: Henson 2|
Exeter Chiefs 28 Gloucester Rugby 27
Adam Hughes admits the quality of Exeter Chiefs' next flock of youngsters caught him by surprise as they battled back from behind to kick off the defence of their LV= Cup crown with a win against Gloucester Rugby. The first half at Sandy Park was an even affair as Hughes' brilliant intercept try pegged back Gareth Evans' score for the Cherry & Whites, who dominated possession. But tries from Bill Meakes and Yann Thomas, plus 12 points from fly-half Aled Thomas, seemed to suggest the reigning champions were heading for a downfall.
However a last-minute converted penalty try after Fetu'u Vainikolo's effort ensured a 28-27 win, with kicker Ceri Sweeney's 13 points also proving pivotal for the hosts at the end.
And it was the young guns among the replacements, such as Will Carrick-Smith and Tom Hendrickson, whose never-say-die spirit particularly caught Hughes' eye.
|Exeter Chiefs||Gloucester Rugby|
|Tries: Hughes, Vainikolo, Penalty||Tries: Evans, Meakes, Y Thomas|
|Conversions: Sweeney 2||Conversions: A Thomas 3|
|Penalties: Sweeney 3||Penalties: A Thomas 2|
London Irish 16 Leicester Tigers 17
A revitalised Leicester Tigers hung on to record a smash-and-grab victory over London Irish as converted tries in either half by Miles Benjamin and Robert Barbieri sneaked a 17-16 victory.
The Exiles will feel aggrieved after pinning the Tigers back for much of the match, but could not turn possession into points with just a Guy Armitage try and three Myles Dorrian penalties to show for it.
|Tries: Armitage||Tries: Benjamin, Barbieri|
|Conversions: Dorrian||Conversions: Bell 2|
|Penalties: Dorrian 3||Penalties: Bell|
Northampton Saints 37 Newcastle Falcons 23
Northampton Saints made the first step to a possible LV= Cup Final at Franklin's Gardens after seeing off Newcastle Falcons 37-23. Tom Catterick's early try stunned Saints early on but they quickly found their groove as Teimana Harrison, Mike Haywood and a double from the impressive Tom Collins secured a bonus point. Falcons fly-half Rory Clegg edged counterpart Will Hooley by 13 to 12 off the kicking tee while Juan Pablo Socino's try threatened a comeback before the hosts sealed it through Howard Packman.
|Northampton Saints||Newcastle Falcons|
|Tries: Collins 2, Harrison, Haywood, Packman||Tries: Catterick, Socino|
|Conversions: Hooley 3||Conversions: Clegg 2|
|Penalties: Hooley 2||Penalties: Clegg 3|
Saracens 25 Harlequins 20
Conor O'Shea believes Harlequins let Saracens run away with the game in the first half after their admirable fightback fell short at Allianz Park. Duncan Taylor and Mike Ellery aimed a one-two punch with tries in the first half though Mark Lambert and Charlie Walker kept Sarries honest as the game approached the final 20 minutes. However, a Jack Wilson score and the consistent kicking of Ben Spencer proved the difference for last year's LV= Cup semi-finalists in a 25-20 win.
|Tries: Taylor, Ellery, Wilson||Tries: Lambert, Walker|
|Conversions: Spencer 2||Conversions: Swiel 2|
|Penalties: Spencer 2||Penalties: Grimoldby, Swiel|