Nine-week ban for Zebre biter
NEWS: Zebre hooker Oliviero Fabiani has been suspended for nine weeks for biting an opponent during a European Champions Cup match last weekend.
Fabiani was sent off by referee, Mathieu Raynal (France), for biting the Connacht lock Quinn Roux in the 29th minute of their match at Stadio Sergio Lanfranchi in contravention of Law 10.4 (m).
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (m), Biting of an opponent, carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: 12 weeks; Mid-Range: 18 weeks; Top End: 24 to 208 weeks.
An independent Disciplinary Committee consisting of Antony Davies (England), Chairman, Jean-Noel Couraud (France) and Daniel White (England) heard evidence and submissions from Fabiani, who pleaded guilty to the offence, from Zebre representative, Ernesto Cavatorti, and from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.
In upholding the red card decision, the Committee found that the offence was at the mid-range of World Rugby's sanctions and selected 18 weeks as the appropriate entry point.
The Committee then decided to reduce the sanction by the maximum of 50 percent – nine weeks - due to Fabiani's timely guilty plea, expression of remorse and clean disciplinary record before imposing a suspension of nine weeks.
Fabiani is free to play on January 9, 2017. Both the player and EPCR have the right to appeal the decision.
Meanwhile, Brive lock Johan Snyman has been suspended for five weeks following an independent Disciplinary Hearing found him guilty for a dangerous tackle during his team's European Rugby Challenge Cup Round Two match against Worcester Warriors.
Snyman was cited by the match Citing Commissioner, Eddie Wigglesworth (Ireland), for a dangerous tackle on Tom Heathcote in the 49th minute of the match at Sixways Stadium in contravention of Law 10.4 (e).
Under World Rugby's Sanctions for Foul Play, Law 10.4 (e), Dangerous tackling of an opponent including a tackle or attempted tackle above the line of the shoulders (even if the tackle starts below the line of the shoulders), carries the following sanction entry points - Low End: two weeks; Mid-Range: six weeks; Top End: 10 to 52 weeks
An independent Disciplinary Committee consisting of Mike Hamlin (England), Chairman, Roddy Dunlop (Scotland) and Andrea Caranci (Italy) heard evidence and submissions from Snyman, who admitted foul play but who did not accept that the offence warranted a red card, and from the EPCR Disciplinary Officer, Liam McTiernan.
In upholding the citing complaint, the Committee found that Snyman had committed an act of foul play that warranted a red card. It determined that the offence was at the mid-range of World Rugby's sanctions and selected six weeks as the appropriate entry point.
The Committee added one week to the sanction as a deterrent in line with World Rugby's memoranda regarding dangerous tackles, and then reduced the sanction by two weeks due to the player's expression of remorse and good character, before imposing a suspension of five weeks.
Taking into account a one-week break in the Top 14 match schedule, Snyman is free to play on December 5, 2016.