Stats lowdown: Opta Boxing Day preview

Tuesday 21 December 2021 Written by: Adam

● Newcastle Falcons have won their last four home games against Sale Sharks in the Premiership, after winning just one of the previous seven (D2 L4); the last 11 such games have all ended with just eight points or fewer separating the sides.

● Newcastle Falcons are undefeated in their last three matches at home in the Premiership (W2 D1) but haven’t had a longer unbeaten sequence at home in the top flight since December 2017 – April 2018 (W5).

● Sale Sharks are winless in their last seven away games in the Premiership (D1 L6) but haven’t had a longer run of away games without a win in the league since November 2016 – November 2017, when they lost 11 consecutive matches on the road.

● Newcastle Falcons have made more than 100 carries in three of their last four games in the Premiership, after making fewer than that in each of their previous five matches.

● Newcastle Falcons have won 97% of their rucks in the Premiership in 2021/22, the highest success rate of any team; they have lost just 2.7 attacking rucks per game, the fewest of any team in the league this season.

● Sale Sharks have enjoyed 57% territory on average this season, the most of any team in the Premiership in 2021/22; they have also recorded the third highest share of possession in the league this campaign (52%, behind Exeter and London Irish).

● Sale Sharks have averaged the most 22 entries per game of any team in the Premiership this season (11.3); however, they have also scored the fewest points per entry in the league this term (1.7).

● Sale Sharks have made 8.1 dominant tackles per game in the Premiership in 2021/22, the highest average of any team; Jono Ross has made eight dominant tackles for the Sharks, only Saracens’ Billy Vunipola has made more than him in the league this season (9).

● Adam Radwan has scored eight tries in his last 10 Premiership games for Newcastle, including four in seven so far this season.

● Sale Sharks’ AJ MacGinty has slotted 93% of his place kicks in the Premiership this season (14/15), the highest percentage of any player to attempt 5+ kicks at goal in the league in 2021/22.

Tickets for Sunday’s 3pm kick-off at Kingston Park Stadium are available by [**clicking here**][1].