PAUL Deacon paid tribute to Sale Sharks' collective mindset and strength of character after Saturday's hard-fought 18-15 Premiership win against Northampton Saints at the AJ Bell Stadium.

The Sharks bounced back from going 12-3 behind early on to secure their third league win of the season. 

Tries from Faf De Klerk and Ben Curry helped turn the tide before Will Cliff's second-half penalty strike secured a precious four-point haul for Sale. 

And attack coach Deacon said it was a just reward for the way the Sharks had dug deep to fight back. 

"We were obviously delighted with the win and the four points but it certainly wasn't pretty," he admitted. 

"I was bit disappointed at half-time as I felt we’d dropped our level in that first half. We'd got panicked a bit by the weather conditions and went into our shells a bit. 

"We spoke about that at half time and I felt we changed our mindset well for most of the second half and it was pleasing to get through that tough period at the end of the game. 

"We put ourselves in a tough spot at the end of the game by giving penalties away but I was happy with our discipline – it was better than last week at Leicester for sure. 

"The four points were the goal and we achieved it. There are things we can do better and we can learn from the game. 

"We need to learn that we can still play rugby in the wet and I think we showed that in the second half but we need to do that for 80 minutes going forward. 

"But I never doubt the players character. They are in it together and they are a close group of blokes – going two tries down and coming back shows that. 

"We have targeted this run of three Premiership games. Unfortunately, we didn’t quite get what we wanted last week but we've got four points this week and now we need to regroup, learn what we need to learn and take it down to Worcester tomorrow."