England stand-in Marcus Smith scored 24 of Harlequin’s 29 points in their win at Hall
Sale: (10) 13
Try: S. James Cons: du Prez Handles: du Preez 2
Harlequins: (17) 29
Trying to: David, Smith Cons: Smith 2 Handles: Smith 5

England’s Marcus Smith led the way with 24 points in an individual win as 2021 Premier League champions Harlequins ended Sale’s unbeaten start to the season.

Smith converted a try of his own, kicking the second of his side’s two points in the first half, adding to Nick David’s opening try and also kicking five penalties.

Sale briefly took the lead when Sam James’ try was followed by two strikes from Rob du Preez.

But, leading 17-10 at halftime, Queens outplayed the hosts.

Sale’s hopes of starting the season with a sixth straight Premier League win were dashed by a dominant performance, bolstered by Smith’s boot, as he kicked four second-half penalties and just another saved by du Preez as Queens claimed just their third win of the campaign. .

visitors, beaten 27-19 by Leicester at home last week, got off to a great start, scoring the opening kick in just the 10th minute.

Danny Kerr curled a deft right-footed shot into space and, although Nick David was brought down short of the line as he collected the ball, the former Worcester winger had enough momentum to turn his way.

After Smith converted a ball from the right touchline, center James responded well to Sale’s effort just five minutes later, heading under the bar after defender Joe Carpenter chased down the right.

Du Preez added the equalizer and a penalty for a brief 10-7 lead. But it lasted just three minutes before Smith’s boot leveled again.

And Queens went 17-10 up after they capitalized on the pressure late in the first half and scored again through Smith, who took Kerr’s pass and darted in close to the posts.

From that point on, with Queens at his best – and Smith marshalling his troops well – it was just a case of what the winning score would be.

And Smith’s 12 points in each half matched his best in his 100th Premier League appearance as the 13-capped England playmaker helped lift his side to fifth in the table.

Who’s next?

Harlequins’ next match is Saturday’s home game against London Irish, with Sale returning to action a day later at Saracens.

If third-placed Gloucester can’t beat Exeter strongly to claim the bonus point on Friday, Sunday’s Sarries-Sale game will now see the top-two meet.

Sarri are on their own at the top of the table with only a 100% win in the Premier League.

Sales boss Alex Sanderson:

“We just gave Queens too many points. We don’t really have to do much to create moments, but we just need to finish them.

“Our standards need to be better too. And it’s clear that our decision-making in attack needs to be much better. Add to that more defensive discipline and not giving away as many penalty points and that’s what went wrong.

“So far this season we have operated with unwavering composure in our game, but we haven’t seen it. We’re going to have an unlucky Monday, but we have to come back on Tuesday and get back on the horse.’

Harlequins coach Tabai Matson:

“Every time Marcus Smith retires from the England team, it seems like he comes back a better player and that’s fantastic for us. He again set a wonderful example.

“He measures the pace and keeps control and he keeps the scoreboard ticking. To play 100 Premier League games at just 23 is just ridiculous. He’s a great young player and he’s going to break a lot of records.

“This is a great result. Sale has been known to be a tough place for us over the years, but we’ve dug deep. We squeezed them at crucial times and although it wasn’t classic Queens rugby, we stopped a lot of Sale’s momentum at crucial times.”

Sale: Carpenter; Roebuck, S. James, Tuilagy, O’Flaherty; R du Preez, Quirk; Rhode, Ashman, Schoenert, Wiese, J. Hill, Ross, T. Curry, Du Preez.

Replacements: Taylor, McIntyre, Harper, Beaumont, du Preez, Warr, S. Hill, Reed.

Harlequins: Alan; David, Marchant, Esterhuizen, Morley; M Smith, Care, Marler, Musk, Louw, Lamb, Herbst, Kenningham, Evans, White.

Replacements: Riley, Garcia Botha, Carrod, Hammond, Jurevicius, Gyaltema, Edwards, Anyanwu.

Judge: Christoph Ridley (RFU)