SALE Sharks director of rugby Steve Diamond rued silly penalties after his side's narrow 20-16 reverse at Gloucester in last Saturday's Premiership clash.

Fly-half AJ MacGinty scored a good second-half try and kicked 11 points with the boot in what was a hard-fought encounter at a sold-out Kingsholm, edging Sale into a 16-14 lead on the hour.

But two late second-half penalties from Billy Twelvetrees saw the Cherry and Whites claim the victory despite ferocious late pressure from the Sharks to end Sale's run of three straight league victories.

"I think overall Gloucester just controlled the game a little bit better than us," Diamond told the club's website.

"We are both good sides and it was always going to be tight and the first half went very well but we didn't take our chances.

"I think we gave away silly penalties that allowed them to get their noses in front.

"We were just disappointed with a couple of passages of play – a couple of knock-ons, a forward pass, silly penalties – as I thought we had got away from that.

"The pitch was heavy, we are not used to playing on a surface like that and it sapped our energy levels.

"However, I'm not too despondent. I'd have liked the four points but we have taken six from the past two games so I'm relatively pleased with that.

"Now we've just to get stay in sync with the top six and we are good enough to do that.

"We'll lick our wounds and get ready for Harlequins next weekend."