Nonu slapped with three-week ban
Sun, 30 Jun 2013 12:36
The player's record was not unblemished
The Highlanders' All Black centre Ma'a Nonu has been slapped with a three-week ban for a spear tackle.
SANZAR judicial officer Jannie Lubbe accepted a "guilty" plea from Nonu, for contravening Law 10.4 (j): Dangerous Tackling - Lifting Tackling.
This follows after the veteran All Black was red-carded by the referee, Steve Walsh, during his team's 12-40 Super Rugby loss top the Crusaders at the weekend.
The incident occurred in the 58th minute of the match and was one of three cards on the game - with Nonu's Highlanders teammate Jarrad Hoeata yellow-carded in the 20th minute for attacking the face of Andy Ellis, while the Crusaders' AllBlack hooker Corey Flynn was sent to the sin bin for a dangerous high tackle (in the 60th minute) moments after having come on as a replacement.
Nonu has been suspended from all forms of the game from June 29 up to and including July 21.
In his finding, Lubbe ruled the following that Nonu's tackle was "executed poorly" and there was no intention to hurt the opponent.
"In the dynamic situation that existed during the tackle there was no opportunity to bring the tackled player safely to the ground," Lubbe said in a statement.
"Nonu accepted that the tackle was poorly executed by lifting his opponent. The tackled player was not injured and the incident had no effect on the Crusaders team.
"A medical report obtained from the Crusaders confirmed that the player involved suffered no injury.
"Aaron Lloyd, on behalf of the player, made able and helpful submissions regarding the determination of the correct entry level and I have determined that the entry level is at low end carrying a four week suspension.
"Taking into account the record of the player over a period of more than a decade playing Super Rugby, which is not unblemished, his early plea of guilt and the remorse shown, I have determined to give the player a discount of one week and to suspend the player from all rugby for a period of three weeks."
* Watch Ma'a Nonu's spear tackle here!
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