Ruben Schoeman has been slapped with a suspension for his controversial hit in the clash between the Lions and Dragons.
The lock was sent off for bracing himself, while airborne in an attempted charge down, for unavoidable head contact with Dragons winger Ashton Hewitt during the Vodacom URC round 7 match at Ellis Park.
Referee Andrea Piardi ejected Schoeman in the 24th minute, citing Law 9.25 – a player must not intentionally charge or obstruct an opponent who has just kicked the ball.
Schoeman acknowledged the foul play but argued that the act warranted only a yellow card. The panel of Roddy MacLeod, Gary Gordon and Gorgon Black considered the degree of danger and found that Schoeman had not established that Piardi was wrong to dismiss him.
The committee upheld the red card, imposing a three-week suspension. Completion of the World Rugby Coaching Intervention Programme could reduce the sanction by one week.
As it stands, Schoeman is unavailable for the Lions’ clash with Perpignan in France in the Challenge Cup on Saturday as well as next week’s visit from Newcastle Falcons to Ellis Park against Sharks and their URC derby against the Sharks (6 January).
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