Sale’s Mark Cueto set to make 200th Aviva Premiership appearance

Sale Sharks wing Mark Cueto is set to make his 200th Aviva Premiership appearance this weekend

Two European titles, an appearance on the British & Irish Lions tour of New Zealand in 2005, a Premiership title in 2006, a Rugby World Cup final in 2007 with England in Paris and the record for the number of career tries are just some of the highlights in the career of Mark Cueto.

This weekend, the Sale Sharks wing looks forward to another momentous landmark at Sixways as he makes his 200th appearance in the Premiership at the age of 34.

“I am looking forward to running out at Sixways, it’s another milestone in my career that I have enjoyed thoroughly since my debut at Bristol all those years ago,” Cueto said.

“I have had the pleasure of playing with and against some great players and I am still enjoying my rugby.”

The Wokington-born man was a late convert to rugby.

Hailing from a part of the country known more for its rugby league heritage than union, Cueto grew up in the West Midlands and Cheshire as a football player at school level, a Manchester United fan, but also adept at other sports including athletics.

Rugby union wasn’t on the cards until he was one of a number of footballers recruited to make up a rugby team at Alsager Comprehensive to play Holmes Chapel in 1996.

Cueto is a rare man having spent his entire career with the Sharks since making his debut against the Bristol Shoguns in 2001 after coming through the ranks at Altrincham Kersal.

Now in his 13th season with the Salford-based club, he has an appetite which shows no sign of abating despite calling a day on his international career in 2011 with 20 tries in 55 appearances after playing a key role in the England side at the Rugby World Cup.

As Leinster and Ireland centre Brian O’Driscoll looks set to call time on an even more illustrious rugby career at 35, Cueto—11 months his junior—signed a new one-year deal with the Sharks to take him into a 14th season and scoring tries is very much at the forefront of his mind.

“Hopefully with signing a new deal I will be able to build on the 84 tries I have scored in the Premiership,” he added.

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