Steve Diamond targets new Sale Sharks fly-half

Nick Macleod

Sale chief executive Steve Diamond has confirmed the club are searching for a new fly-half for next season.

Nick Macleod has become regular number 10 following Charlie Hodgson's exit, but Rob Miller is the only recognised cover after Tasesa Lavea's departure.

Macleod, 28, has started every Premiership game racking up 231 points.

"Nick has done a fantastic job for us, he's just agreed a new two-year extension, but we're looking," Diamond told BBC Radio Manchester.

"We've got a shortlist of five who are available and we're doing our selective recruitment on those as we speak.

"We realise that to be in the latter stages of the competitions, whether it's the play-offs in the Aviva [Premiership], or the latter stages of the Heineken Cup or the Amlin Challenge Cup we need to have two players in that position."

Diamond has already secured lock Richie Gray and prop Eifion Lewis-Roberts for next season and has promised not to make wholesale changes similar to last summer, which saw over 20 players leave.

The Sharks have also begun renewing contracts that expire in the summer with Welsh trio Macleod, Dwayne Peel and Marc Jones all signing new deals this week.

Having taken up his new role of chief executive at the start of the month, the former Sale hooker is now looking to bring more English players to Edgeley Park.

"What we have to make sure, when we are doing the recruiting, is that is that we have an equal number of overseas players as English qualified players," Diamond added.

"Because I put the side together last year the way I did, the balance isn't right at the moment, we don't have enough English players on a regular basis.

"Just like the old adage a good big'un always beats a good little'un, if I have the opportunity to sign an English qualified players as opposed to a foreign player, we'll do it.

"We're going to bring higher quality world class players to the club now in ones and twos and threes, not like we had to do last year with a mass exodus.

"I'm sure with those quality of players that I've already signed, and one or two to come, it will compound the squad, it will make it more stable and with stability we can progress next year."

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