Leicester Tigers v Sale - as it happened
Tom Croft leads out Leicester Tigers at Welford Road in his 100th start for the club as he continues his return from a serious neck injury.
Mathew Tait comes back into the backline at full-back for the injured Geordan Murphy, while Niall Morris starts on the wing in place of Scott Hamilton, who drops to the bench.
Here is how the action unfolded:
1 min: PENALTY 3-0 Referee Wayne Barnes awards Tigers a penalty at the breakdown on the Sale 22 just 30 seconds into the game and George Ford puts Tigers three points up.
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9 min: The Welford Road crowd erupt as Croft puts Adam Thompstone clear down the left. But the cheers are premature as Croft's pass is forward.
12 min: Thomas Waldrom dives over the line underneath the posts but the play is brought back as Logovi'i Mulipola had knocked the ball on.
23 min: Tigers let a golden chance go begging after a beautiful move in the middle of the park saw Dan Bowden offload to Morris, who had made a great diagonal run into the Sale 22. But the winger takes too long and, instead of going himself, tries to offload to Thompstone who is held up.
26min: TRY 10-0 …and finally Tigers make their pressure tell. The hosts have a mass of numbers out left and the ball finds Mulipola, who drives to ground before Ed Slater dives over the line.
30 min: PENALTY 10-3 Croft is penalised for coming in at the side just inside his own half and Nick McLeod strikes the ball cleanly.
32 min: PENALTY 13-3 Tigers hit straight back as Sale are pinged for holding on at the ruck. Ford makes no mistake from close range.
36 min: TRY 20-3 Adam Thompstone latches on to a lovely chip over the top by Bowden, but he is pulled down by Tom Brady before he can dive on the ball. The Sale winger not only concedes a penalty try but also finds himself in the sin bin. Ford converts in front of the posts.
40 min: TRY 27-3 On the stroke of half-time, Slater picks up his second try of the afternoon as he breaks from 40 metres out and charges into the corner. Ford nails his conversion and Tigers take a dominant lead into the break.
H-T: Tigers 27 Sale 3
48 min: TRY 34-3 Ford puts a delightful kick in behind the Sale backline and it bobbles into touch right in the corner. Tigers turn the ball over at the breakdown and Bowden spins out a majestic ball, missing out two players, to Matt Smith, who goes over in the corner. Ford keeps up his 100 per cent record with a great kick from touch.
54 min: TRY 41-3 Smith and Slater are now both on a hat-trick as Tigers almost walk the ball through the Sale defence. Danny Cipriani stands watching as Smith strolls under the posts. Ford adds another two points to his tally.
57 min: Tigers almost make it three tries in 10 minutes as Bowden chases down a long kick from Thompstone. Bowden adds another kick of his own but it's slightly too heavy and runs dead. Sale look like they've thrown in the towel.
67 min: TRY 48-3 It really is becoming a rout now as Tigers start to showboat on the attack. A nice miss-pass from Ford, who is having a great day at the office, finds Mat Tait, who strolls through uncontested. Ford hasn't missed anything this afternoon, and that doesn't change as he converts again.
78 min: TRY 48-10 Sale finally get their first try on the board with Andy Powell getting over the line, but it is nothing more than a consolation on an afternoon where the gulf in class between the two sides has been cavernous. Cipriani converts.
F-T: Tigers 48 Sale 10