A WINDY away day to London ended in a 32-14 defeat for Sale FC against Old Elthamians in National League One.

Sale started well with success at an early scrum, but a yellow card for Rhys Davies reduced them to 14 men, giving the hosts the advantage they needed to score a try.

An excellent restart kick from Keiran Wilkinson forced the hosts' scrum-half to kick into touch on their own 22. Soon after the home side chipped over Sale’s defence but full-back Jonty Rawcliffe collected the ball in the air then outstripped the home defence to score and Wilkinson converted to take the 14 men into the lead on 18 minutes.

Sale were soon back under pressure but managed to get on the front foot after being awarded a penalty.

Moments later, quick thinking by Tom Ailes at the back of the ruck saw him pick up and hop over the back of the breakdown to stroll in under the posts unopposed on 24 minutes.

They continued to work hard and were handling all that the hosts threw at them, until a quick penalty decision saw Elthamians run in a try on 39 minutes with the conversion making it 14-12 to Sale at half time.

On 49 minutes, Sale gave away a penalty which was converted to see the hosts take a lead they never relinquished.

Shortly after they extended their advantage, breaking the middle to score under the posts with the conversion making it 22-14.

Good breaks by both Wilkinson and Anthony Bingham got Sale back up the field but a penalty was awarded for obstruction against them and their hard work was undone.

With the penalty count beginning to stack up against Sale, they found themselves having to defend deep inside their own half. 

Another penalty for collapsing the scrum was converted from in front of the posts, before the home side hammered the Sale line and eventually drove over for the bonus-point try on 77 minutes to seal the points.