Home Entertainment Premiership Rugby Shield Review: Semi-finals spots almost decided

Premiership Rugby Shield Review: Semi-finals spots almost decided

The battle for the Premiership Rugby Shield rages on, with more sides booking their berths in the knockout stages.

Exeter Braves secured their spot in the semi-finals while winning for Saracens Storm made it almost a formality that they will get the ones to join them from the Southern Conference.

Meanwhile, with Newcastle Falcons already confirmed as qualifiers from the Northern Conference, Northampton Wanderers seized the opportunity to defeat them and take a step closer to joining them in the knockout stages.

Northern Conference

Northampton Wanderers collected a bonus point win over table toppers Newcastle Falcons to leave them needing just a point to secure a semi-final spot.

A first-half hat-trick from Andrew Kellaway put Northampton in command of the match but there was much rugby still to be played.

Scores from Cameron Nordli-Kelemeti and Joel Matavesi, and brought back to the match but Tom Collins and Matt Worley went over to seal at 40-36 victory for the home side.

And Worcester Cavaliers' hopes of reaching the semi-finals were dealt a hammer blow as they were beaten 8-26 by Wasps.

Tana Umaga's nephew Jacob went over with TJ Harris and Tim Cardall before a brilliant just effort from Callum Sirker – his seventh try in three games – sealed the bonus point.

The result in Northampton makes it almost impossible for Worcester to qualify.

Meanwhile, Leicester Tigers did the business over Sale Jets for the second time in two weeks, running out 38-24 winners to put some daylight between themselves and their bottom-placed opponents.

The first 40 minutes saw some sleeves and two yellow cards handed out.

However, Kwaku Asiedu and Will Lane added to Will Findlay's first-half brace early in the second to get a bonus point victory sewn up.

results

Northampton Wanderers 40-36 Newcastle Falcons

Leicester Tigers 38-24 Sale Jets

Worcester Cavaliers 8-26 Wasps

Southern Conference

Gloucester United staged an incredible comeback to scupper any chances of Bath United making a late surge for a semi-final spot.

Tom de Glanville gave the blue, black and whites an early lead and Sam Elrick added another before a De Glanville third put Bath in control.

Gloucester, however, rallied through Tom Stanton and a quick-thinking tap penalty from replacement scrum-half Ben Vellacott

Meanwhile, Exeter Braves remain in the top spot after them 36-19 Sunday afternoon victory over local rivals Bristol Bears booked their place in the semi-finals.

Sam Maunder, Greg Holmes, Tom O’Flaherty and Onehunga Kaufusi all grabbed first half of the game for visitors to put the game beyond Bristol.

Saracens Storm remain the only side that can dethrone Exeter as they recorded at the narrow 24-17 victory over Harlequins at the Stoop.

Second-rowers Joel Kpoku and Sun Day by Henry Cheeseman and Charlie Walker scores.

But Andy Christie picked up from the base of a scrum to bundle over before Man Vunipola notched to drop goal and extend Saracens ’lead.

Saracens travel to Sandy Park for a showdown with Exeter on Monday April 22.

results

Bath United 24-31 Gloucester United

Bristol Bears 19-36 Exeter Braves

Harlequins 17-24 Saracens Storm

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