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Steyn off the hook

  • 31 Mar 2014
Sharks centre Frans Steyn against the Waratahs Sharks centre Frans Steyn against the Waratahs

Sharks centre Frans Steyn has been given an off-field yellow card for a dangerous tackle on the Waratahs' Kurtley Beale.

Steyn pleaded guilty to contravening Law 10.4 (e) Dangerous tackling. The referee for the match, Mike Fraser, awarded a penalty for the incident which occurred in the 24th minute.

Sanzar duty judicial officer Jannie Lubbe SC said: 'Video evidence of the incident showed that Steyn executed initially a legitimate tackle on his immediate opponent by grabbing the bottom of the jumper of the Waratahs player, Kurtley Beale with both hands.This was done at speed and in a dynamic situation.

'In the process of the tackle, Beale passed the ball to a team-mate but after the pass, Steyn continued with the tackle by going to ground and swinging his opponent with him. This resulted in the tackled player landing on his back and his head hitting the ground with some force. The referee called for a review of the incident and having reviewed the incident, awarded a penalty against the Sharks.

'The citing commissioner correctly pointed out in his report that as a result of the late tackle, the Waratahs player was placed at risk of injury to his spinal and head area.

'Mr Gerrie Swart [Steyn's agent] submitted on behalf of the player that the initial tackle was legitimate and that Steyn had no intent of causing injury to his opponent as he was not in a position to observe that the tackled player had passed the ball.

'In assessing the circumstances around the incident, an off-field yellow card was considered the appropriate sanction as a suspension was not warranted for the offence.'

Meanwhile, Waratahs wing Rob Horne received a one-week ban for foul play in the same match and therefore won't play against the Stormers on Saturday.

Horne contravened Law 10.4 (a) Punching or striking and 10.4 (e) Dangerous tackling when he made contact with Steyn. Upon further review of the match footage, the citing commissioner deemed the incident had met the red card threshold for foul play.

'Video evidence of the incident clearly showed that Horne's right arm made contact with Steyn in the neck and jaw area with what appeared to be a swinging arm,' said Lubbe.

Photo: Steve Haag/Gallo Images

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