Sale Sharks’ campaign in the Premiership Rugby Cup continues this Friday as they host scandal-hit Saracens in the semi-final clash at the AJ Bell Stadium.
A fourth round 22-27 victory away to London Irish in October has edged the Sharks one step closer to lifting the prestigious trophy for the first time.
Coming off the back of an impressive victory away at Gallagher Premiership league leaders, Exeter Chiefs, Sale will be going into Friday’s knockout game with confidence against Saracens, who currently sit bottom of the league table.
Last season’s Gallagher Premiership champions, Saracens, were docked a further 70 points last week due to the Rugby Football Union adjusting their salary cap regulations that then allowed them to heavily increase the 35 point deduction that they had already imposed on Saracens last year.
The 2019 Premiership Rugby Cup runners-up now face impending relegation from the Gallagher Premiership as their current points tally is at -77, a massive 89 points off Leicester Tigers who sit one position above Saracens in 11th.
Although Sale Sharks are 103 points ahead of Saracens, the Sarries have actually won more league games then the Sharks this season, demonstrating that although the mood over at the Allianz Park Stadium may be doom and gloom, Friday night’s game will definitely be competitive.
The last three meetings between the two sides have saw Sale Sharks come out winners each time including the first round of the Premiership Rugby Cup in September when Sale recorded their first win at the Allianz Park Stadium since 2005, a 17-36 victory which ended Saracens’ unbeaten run at home that stretched back to February 2018.
The winners of Friday’s contest will face Harlequins in the final, who breezed past Exeter Chiefs on Sunday in a 22-49 victory.
With Sale Sharks and Saracens facing off again in the league next week, both teams will be keen for bragging rights.
The semi-final kicks off at 19.45pm on Friday 7th February, with more details available here.