Sale Sharks 13-35 Leicester Tigers, AJ Bell Stadium
George Ford contributed with 20 points as Leicester Tigers qualified for the European Champions Cup with a 13-35 win over Sale Sharks in the final round of the Aviva Premiership at AJ Bell Stadium.
The bonus point win ensured Tigers finished fifth in the Aviva Premiership table with 63 points and this will be the first time in the last 14 years they miss out on the play-off with Newcastle Falcons edging them out in the fourth spot while Sale Sharks finish eighth.
Sale Sharks started the game with a setback as Will Addison limped off the field in the ninth minute and a minute later Jonah Holmes crossed over to score the opening try for the Tigers with Ford slotting the conversion.
Aj MacGinty pulled things back with back to back penalties as the gap between the two teams came to one point heading into the break.
Ford shifted gears and gave early advantage to the visitors at the start of the second half with a converted try followed by back to back penalty kicks but his England team-mate Marland Yarde responded back with a try of his own in the 53rd minute and MacGinty slotted the conversion to make it 13-20.
The desperation to finish the game well was evident with the intent from the Tigers and Mike Williams dotted down in the 65th minute followed by a conversion and a drop goal from Ford which pretty much sealed the game for them and Holmes with his second in the final minute sealed them the bonus point victory.
Widely regarded as the most competitive rugby union league in the world...it can only be the Aviva Premiership.
12 teams compete in the league over a season, playing every team both home and away, before four move into the playoffs and one is relegated.
The division is becoming more and more exciting as each year passes by so who will be lifting silverware at Twickenham in May?
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Aviva Premiership Rugby 2017/18 - Points Table
2017-18 Top Points-Scorers
Aviva Premiership Rugby 2017/18 - Leading try-scorers